About the Patient Participation Group


The Patient Participation Group meets regularly to:

  • Help us plan services for patients
  • Give views on our developments so far
  • Direct our aims for the coming year

If you would like to be a member of our patient participation group, it would be helpful if you could complete the Patient Participation Group Application form.



Patient Participation Group Meeting Minutes

Wednesday 13 December 2023 | 3.45 to 4.45pm

Present Practice Staff:

  • Dr George Verghese, Chair & Partner WHC
  • Rona Sian, Practice Business Manager, WHC
  • Eileen Marriner, Assistant Practice Manager, WHC
  • Caron Feagan, Reception Supervisor, WHC
  • Christopher East, Practice Care Coordinator
  • Emito Badejo, Practice Care Coordinator

Patients present: (23 Patients joined the meeting)


An SMS text invitation to attend our first virtual PPG had been sent to all patient. The message advised that the PPG would be held via MS Teams link placed on our website. 23 Patients joined the meeting.

Dr Verghese, welcomed everyone to our first virtual PPG and explained the Agenda was to be shared on screen. Permission was sought and received from those attending for the meeting to be recorded and patient comments included would be anonymised.



The Agenda shared on screen included the following:

  1. Primary Care Access Recovery Plan
  2. New Building
  3. Patient Participation Group Going Forward
  4. Q & A

1. Primary Care Access Recovery Plan

Dr Verghese explained that this NHS England Plan had 4 domains, empowering patients, improving primary care access, building capacity and reducing workload between primary and secondary care. 

Empowering patients:

Dr Verghese explained that in order to empower patients to access healthcare and their medical records, the Plan includes promoting the use of the NHS App. Approximately 40% of our patients have signed up to the NHS App on which they can order repeat medications, see test results, view their medical records and book nurses appointments. From November this year the default position is that patients can see all coded and non-coded information in their GP record on the App.  NHS England would like us to have at least 60% of our patients registered to use the NHS App and we believe this will reduce workload and empower patients.

Improving Primary Care Access:

Dr Verghese explained that this part of the NHS England Plan was for practices to develop ways of avoiding the 8am telephone rush. As WHC has operated a Total Telephone Triage system for some years now, all our calls are care navigated to the most appropriate clinician. We have a minimum of 3 staff answering the telephones every morning and 4-5 staff answering telephones between 8 and 9am. We also have an option for patients to contact us online and these are always processed on the same day.

Building Capacity:

This is NHS England’s attempt to get more staff into General Practice; the numbers of GPs, particularly in London is reducing. The Plan is in its early stages and aims to increase the numbers of doctors and appointment availability.

Reducing Workload between Primary & Secondary Care:

The Plan also includes reducing the paperwork for doctors, reduce time spent liaising with hospitals and to try and improve the interface between primary and secondary care.


2. New Building for WHC

Dr Verghese advised that the practice is moving to new premises on 22nd January 2024.  Our new address is 114 Lower Marsh, SE1 7AE (next door to Iceland Supermarket). This is a two story new modular building where we expect to stay for at least 2-3 years whilst permanent accommodation is being sourced.  The modular unit is built to modern specifications with an entrance ramp and wheelchair access.

There will be no changes to services delivered. Dr Verghese thanked the patients for their support in helping us to secure accommodation. Meetings had been held, letters sent to Councillors & MPs etc and this had been very much appreciated by the Partners and practice staff. Dr Verghese then shared the accommodation plans and described the new premises. Some computer graphics of our new premises was shared at the meeting.


3. Patient Participation Group Meetings in 2024:

Dr Verghese advised that we will have no capacity in our new premises to hold PPG meetings so will have to possibly hold these off site or virtually. We do have some PPG representatives who may be happy to engage virtually.  We are always happy to have patients volunteer to be a PPG representative for our practice and with whom we can engage with more regularly throughout 2024.


4. Q & A with Patients

Dr Verghese invited questions from patients.  Some of the queries raised were regarding the premises, our phone system, the NHS APP, scheduling of our PPG meetings and how we get the views of young people and of course GP Access which is always high on the agenda.


Questions raised by patients were would we have the same telephone numbers, possible noise from the railway behind the new premises, disabled access, date of moving to new premises. Dr Verghese explained that we would be keeping the same telephone number only the postal address is different and it will be SE1 7AE. He further explained that we will swap over to the new premises without a break in service provision hopefully around 22nd January 2024. No noise had so far been detected from the railway behind the new premises. During the meeting we shared some computer graphics of our new building layout and Dr Verghese advised that we had disabled access via ramp entrance to the new building, that we would have 2 floors and more patients’ toilets on both floors. As the patients expressed interest in seeing the new premises Dr Verghese agreed to hold a launch event once we have moved into our new premises for those patients wishing to view our new premises.  

Our digital telephone system:

Dr Verghese explained that NHS England planned for all practice to adopt a digital telephony system which the practice has had now for some time. This is very beneficial to the practice as it demonstrates how many calls are incoming at any given time of the day, how many are on hold, queued and abandoned calls etc. This helps practices for planning purposes to meet the needs of our patients.  We target our resources to meet demand. Dr Verghese explained that on a busy Monday morning he can filter between 200-300 telephone calls or online consultations and walk ins.  Some patients did not like to music on the telephone system or the fact that they were unaware of their status in the phone queue. However, following the meeting today the music has been changed and patients are now informed as to their position in the queue when telephoning the practice. There is also a call-back feature for patients.


Dr Verghese reminded patients that this app gives patients the ability to consult with us by on-line consults, make nursing appointments, order repeat medications, see blood test results and also look at health records. The functionality of the NHS APP is improving all the time. One of the questions raised about the NHS APP was if it facilitated transfer to 3rd parties and hence accelerate privatisation.  Dr Verghese reassured patients that as Data Controllers the practice is in control of patient data and that there is no access of identifiable data to any outside company at present.  Patients can opt out should this change in the future.

PPG Meetings and engaging with Patients:

Questions from patients at the meeting included, how we engage with patients, how we seek views of younger patients, timing of our PPGs.  Dr Verghese explained that we try to hold our PPG at a time when most can attend.  We used to hold PPG meetings early evenings to accommodate those who are working and today is our first virtual PPG which we will use again in future. As regards engaging with younger patients Dr Verghese said this is an area the practice could do better on. One of the patients present who had experience in working with the Lambeth Children and Young Person’s forum suggested some ways in engaging young people who are more likely to engage electronically than in person. Dr Verghese said he was happy to discuss further with this particular patient following today’s meeting. In the meantime young people are invited to complete our feedback form on our website.

In addition, Dr Verghese said it would be very helpful to have some representatives from the patient group support the practice on special projects. This would not be any major commitment but it would be good to have some patients who were willing to liaise with the practice if for example we had some projects to roll out to patients and needed to run it past Patient reps for comment on documents being user friendly for example.

GP Access and routes of communication with the practice:

Mostly the patients were happy with our access. Dr Verghese explained that we have used a total telephone triage for some years now which means every call is filtered through a senior doctor in the practice. This ensures patients are directed to the most appropriate clinician be that GP, Nurse, Physician Associate, Pharmacist, Physio etc.  We have face to face appointments available on the day.  Patients can also contact us via the NHS APP, via our website and by telephone.   Patients generally were very happy with our access and gave positive feedback such as ….” You’re doing a great job. Whenever I am sick I phone up and 9 times out of 10 they say come down and we wills see you. “     ” I think it’s a great Doctors surgery and we are lucky to have you ”.

Dr Verghese thanked everyone for attending and for their positive engagement and positive feedback. He said those patients interested in viewing our new premises will be invited to a launch event in the new year.


Patient Participation Group Virtual Presentation

Wednesday 13th December 2023


  • Primary Care Access Recovery Plan
  • New Building
  • Patient Participation group going forward
  • Q&A

Primary Care Access Recovery Plan

A recovery plan was presented. Please contact the practice to obtain full details of this.

The NHS App

We invite you our patients use the NHS App.

Learn more about the NHS App

Waterloo Health Centre is Moving

  • January 15th 2024 we will be moving to 114 Lower Marsh, SE1 7AE
  • Next door to Iceland
  • 120 yards from our current premises
  • No change to services delivered

Please contact the practice to view building plans

Patient Participation Group Meetings in 2024

  • We have limited space in our new building
  • Large meetings will not be possible
  • Hold meetings virtually or on another site
  • How to have representatives who we can engage with more regularly

Patient Survey Results

Analysis of 66 Patient Questionnaires completed December 2023 to January 2024

1. How Easy or difficult is it to get through to someone at your GP Practice on the phone?

  • Extremely easy: 29.44%
  • Somewhat easy: 19.29%
  • Neutral: 11.17%
  • Somewhat not easy: 
  • Extremely not easy: 1.1%

2. How easy is it to use your GP Practice's website to look for information or access services?

  • Extremely easy: 14%
  • Somewhat easy: 15%
  • Neutral: 22%
  • Somewhat not easy: 9%
  • Extremely not easy: 1%

3. Overall how would you describe your experience of making an appointment?

  • Very good: 47%
  • Moderate: 16%
  • Low: 3%

4. Were you satisfied with the appointments (or appointments you were offered)?

  • Yes: 82%
  • Maybe: 17%
  • No: 1%

5. Overall how would you describe your experience of your gp practice?

  • Very good: 68%
  • Moderate: 29%
  • Low: 3%