General Information

Practice PremisesPractice BoundaryNew PatientsPatient’s Preference of PractitionerChange of DetailsPatients Not Seen Within 3 YearsPatients Ages 75 & OverPrivate Medical Examinations Disabled AccessPractice Confidentiality PolicyAccess to Medical RecordsMedical ReportsSuggestions / Raising ConcernsStaff ProtectionFreedom Of InformationAbersychan Group Practice Equipment Fund

Medical Education

The practice has a long history of training medical students and also doctors wishing to train in general practice.

The practice would like to thank the support of it’s patients and staff in helping us train a number of local GPs.

Six of our partners had part of their postgraduate training in Abersychan

Practice Premises

We work from two premises.

Our main surgery is in Abersychan and we have a branch surgery Garndiffaith. Details of each can be found below.

Abersychan The Surgery
Old Road
Abersychan
Pontypool Gwent
NP4 7BH
Telephone 01495 772239
Garndiffaith Stanley Road Surgery
Stanley Road
Garndiffaith
Pontypool
NP4 7LY
Telephone 01495 772231

Practice Boundary

Change to practice boundary

Southern Boundary Area

We will no longer accept new patients living South of the Top Tesco Roundabout, which then leads down to the A472 ( Pontypool – Crumlin Road ) or South / East of the A4042 ( Usk Road ) as the road heads North East from the McDonald’s roundabout towards Mamhilad. This includes patients living in New Inn, Lower New Inn, Griffithstown & Sebastoplol.

Our current patients who live in these areas WILL NOT be affected until they leave their current address (even if that move is still within our old boundary area).

If a baby is born into a family who are our current patients (and living at the same address), we will still be happy to register them. However, if there is a new patient being added to that address, or even a Temporary Visitor living at that address, we will no longer be able to accept them on to our Practice List. These patients should look for a GP Surgery within that area whose list is open to taking on such patients.

Northern Boundary Area

For at least 2 years now, we have had the same changes in place for patients who live North of Cwmavon.

Why?

Following discussions with Anuerin Bevan Health Board (ABHB) and recommendations (during a recent review) by the Medical Protection Society (MPS), we have been looking at ways in which we can maintain the level of service we provide to our Practice population. One of the initial recommendations was to review the size of our Practice boundary. Each Practice boundary is set by the individual GP Practice, following discussions with their respective Local Health Boards (in our case, ABHB), whose role it is to ensure that everyone, regardless of where they live, is covered for access to NHS Primary Care.

As you are probably all aware, there are times when a patient, for appropriate medical reasons, may require a home visit by a GP. At these times, the GP(s) needs to take time away from seeing patients in the surgery, to travel to the home of the patient(s), which can in our case, and depending on traffic etc, can take 10-15mins traveling time from house to house.

One of the MPS recommendations was to reconsider our current boundary size, as it is one of the largest in the Torfaen area. This was discussed at a recent Practice Meeting. We then applied for permission from ABHB who have given us approval to make the following changes, with immediate effect.

New Patients

When you register with us, you will be interviewed and asked to complete a questionnaire on your personal history to assist in giving you treatment until your records are received from your previous doctor. You will also be offered a health check. Please note that completing the paperwork DOES NOT mean that you have been accepted on to our patient list. This is simply the process you need to start to APPLY to get on our list. This is not always guaranteed.

You will also be asked your ethnic category as required by the Welsh Assembly Government.

Patient’s Preference of Practitioner

Upon Registering with the Practice, it is the NHS Registration Department who shall nominate the patient with a GP. What they try to do is equally balance the amount of patients with each GP within a Practice. You do of course have the right to ask to see another GP (depending on their availability). 

Under the General Medical Services (GMS) Agreement, you are entitled to see a GP of your choice within 4 weeks. This may be extended due to your GP being on holiday etc. Due to the very high demand we have of this service, may we politely ask you not to take your frustration out on the Receptionist if you are being asked to wait a length of time to see your chosen GP. This is simply because of the high number of patients asking to see the same GP.

Change of Name, Address or Telephone Number

Please notify us of a change of your address or name. Unless you do this, the Aneurin Bevan Health Board (Torfaen Locality) may remove your name from our list of patients. We also need to register newborn babies as soon as possible. Please do this as soon as possible as the Practice will not know that you wish the child to be registered with us until you complete the required paperwork. We are not allowed to assume that because a child has been born into a household that is within our catchment area, that the parent / guardian wishes to register the child with the same surgery. This is not always the case.

Please note that if you awaiting an appointment from a local hospital, please inform the hospital of your change of address.

We no longer accept who live in Blaenavon or Cwmbran.

Our practice area is from Varteg and Cwmavon in the North to Sebastopol in the South.

Patients not seen within 3 years

A registered patient who has attained the age of 16 years but has not attained the age of 75 years and has attended neither a consultation with, nor a clinic provided by, the Practice within a period of three years may request a consultation.

Patients aged 75 and over

A registered patient who has attained the age of 75 years and has not participated in a consultation with the period of twelve months, may request such a consultation. The consultation may take place in the home of the patient where, in the opinion of the doctor it would be inappropriate, as a result of the patient’s medical condition, for them to attend the practice premises.

Private Medical Examinations

Medical examinations for special purposes, such as fitness to travel, pre-employment, insurance, driving medicals etc are undertaken at the practice. A fee will be payable. Please contact the surgery to make an appointment for a medical. Fees are clearly displayed in the reception area.

Disabled Access

Wheelchair access to all three buildings is through the main door. A disabled patients’ WC is provided near the entrance

Practice Confidentiality Policy

Confidentiality is the cornerstone of health care and central to the work of everyone working at Abersychan Group Practice. All information about patients is confidential; for the most sensitive diagnoses, to the fact of having visited the surgery or being registered at the practice. The duty of confidentiality owed to a person under 16 is as great as that owed to any other person. All patients can expect that their personal information will not be disclosed without their permission except in the most exceptional of circumstances, for example when someone is at grave risk of serious harm.

Access To Medical Records

Patient records are only available to the doctors and attached staff in the practice. No information will be given to any other person without the patient’s prior consent. Please do not ask for information about other patients, even relatives, as we are unable to give it.

Medical Reports

If you give permission for a medical report for life insurance or employment, the doctors are obliged to include all the relevant information in the medical records. As a result of the Access to Medical Reports Act 1988 any patient is entitled to see a medical report relating to themselves for employment or insurance purposes. Prior notice of this is needed and 21 days is given in which to make your comments before the report is sent. Under the Data Protection Act patients are entitled to request a copy of their computerised summary sheet. If you require a copy please inform reception. There is a fee for this service.

At this point, we would wish to remind you that when you sign a Declaration to Release Medical Information, that you are giving permission to that company to look at ALL your Medical Records. For example, if you are making a claim for Whiplash due to an accident 2 months ago, are you happy that this firm now know about other conditions you may have suffered from many years ago? You may wish to sign up ONLY for the release of Medical Records that relate to the injury being claimed for. READ THEIR FORMS CAREFULLY.

Some Insurance Companies / Solicitor’s often send us a photocopy of your “Consent to Release” form. Please note that we must have an original signature from yourself prior to us releasing this information. Kindly remind them of this or it shall delay the release of your information.

Suggestions / How to Raise Concerns

If you wish to make a suggestion please click the link below to download a copy of the suggestions sheet. You can post this to the surgery or hand it in at reception:

Practice Suggestions Sheet

For information on raising a concern please download a copy of the “concerns guidance for patients” and “Putting Things Right” leaflets below:

Concerns Guidance for Patients
Putting Things Right Leaflet

Staff Protection

A zero tolerance policy towards violent, threatening and abusive behaviour is now in place throughout the National Health Service. The staff in Abersychan Group Practice have the right to do their work in an environment free from violent, threatening and abusive behaviour and everything will be done to protect that right. At no time will any violent, threatening or abusive behaviour be tolerated in this practice. If you do not respect the rights of our staff we may choose to inform the police and make arrangements for you to be removed from our medical list.

Abersychan Group Practice Equipment Fund

The practice holds a fund of donations made by patients that is used to purchase equipment such at blood pressure monitors, nebulisers etc. The equipment is loaned to patients for their temporary use at home. If you wish to make a donation to the fund please contact our practice manager.

Freedom Of Information

3.3.1 Under the Data Protection Act any individual may have the right to view personal information the organisation is holding about them This can include patients requesting to see their medical records and staff requesting to see their HR/Personnel file.

3.3.2 Valid requests from individuals for copies of their data under the subject access provisions of the Data Protection Act shall be passed to the Lead Partner for processing.

3.3.3 Valid requests must be made in writing and clearly state what information is required. Sufficient information must be supplied to confirm the identity of the requestor.

3.3.4 If it is not clear what is being requested, the person requesting should be asked to complete and sign a Data Protection Act Subject Access Request Form.

3.3.5 If the request is from a third party, the validity of the Consent Form must be considered before providing copies of the information requested.

3.3.6 If the form is not suitable, a Practice Consent Form should be sent to the Data Subject to confirm a proper ‘informed consent’ process took place and that they are fully aware of the information being requested and what it has been requested for. This is particularly important if the request is for the release of copies of a complete patient record to a third party, e.g. a solicitor, as the patient will not necessarily know what is contained in their record.

3.3.7 Special arrangements must be made if the Data Subject cannot read or write, is deaf or blind; or cannot speak English or any other languages spoken or understood by the Practice.

3.3.8 The Lead Partner will inform the Practice Manager of the appropriate fee for the copies. The Practice Manager shall inform the Data Subject or Third Party, acting as their agent, of this fee. The maximum fee to be imposed for copying medical records is £50, and £10 for copies of staff personnel records. Where medical records are provided in an electronic format, the maximum fee claimable shall be £10.

3.3.9 On receipt of the payment, the Practice Manager will extract the computer held information and take it with the paper records to the Lead Partner who will review the clinical content and approve documents for copying.

3.3.10 The Practice Manager will ensure that third parties named in the record will not be caused any distress by their release.

3.3.11 If there is any doubt about this, the Practice Manager should contact the third party to get their consent to release the data. If this is not given, references to the third party must be removed from the copies.

3.3.12 The copies of information must be forwarded to the Data Subject or their agent by recorded delivery within 40 days of the request provided any fee applied to the release has been paid.

3.3.13 The reply must contain the required explanations of what the information is used for, who it is has been disclosed to if required, and an explanation if some information has been withheld.

3.3.14 Copies of the requests and letters accompanying the replies should be filed in the patient’s or staff member’s file with a corresponding entry being made in a simple ‘Subject Access’ log to enable queries to be handled quickly and efficiently.

3.3.15 The ‘log’ should have the following content:

• Date of Request
• Data Subject Name
• Summary of Request
• Date of Response
• Summary of Information Released
• Reason for Withholding information
• Signature of the Practice Manager and of the GP
• Date dispatched – (normally within 40 days of the receipt of the request)

Please contact the Pactice Manager for further information.