GP practices in north Derbyshire are working hard to improve waiting times for patients, according to a health boss.
It comes after new statistics show GP practices in north Derbyshire had more than 22 per cent of patients waiting two weeks for an appointment in February - the 10th highest in the country.
Clive Newman, director of GP development for Derby and Derbyshire Clinical Commissioning Groups, said they 'continually monitor the performance of our GP practices' and work closely with GP colleagues to address any areas which they feel may require improvement.
Mr Newman said: "Whilst the statistics indicate that waiting times for GP appointments in north Derbyshire during February were high by comparison, it is important to note that it does not represent the general trend for this area.
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"The GP practices in north Derbyshire work incredibly hard, and offer a very high standard of care with 97 per cent of our practices rated as 'good' or 'outstanding' by the Care Quality Commission.
"In February the 34 practices in north Derbyshire offered over 143,000 appointments between them, and nearly half of all patients were seen the same day or the following day.
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"We recognise that demand for GP appointments is high, and we need to continue to work with practices to support them to offer appointments when patients need them as well as helping people to care for themselves when this is most appropriate. "
He added: "In recent months we have introduced a number of initiatives to support improved waiting times including extended GP practice opening hours over evenings and weekends. This has resulted in an additional 558 primary care appointments per week in north Derbyshire which translates to over 29,000 per annum. We listen to our patients as we work to improve their experience of GP services and a recent survey showed that patients in north Derbyshire indicated a higher than average level of satisfaction. We must always seek opportunities to further improve and will continue to work with our GP colleagues in this regard as we move forward.”