Partnership with The Sound Doctor could slash bill for GP appointments


West Leicestershire GPs and patients latest to use health education films to improve health and make services more efficient

Around 88% of people looking to book GP appointments in the West Leicestershire area say they no longer plan to visit after seeing self-management materials produced by specialists in health education films, The Sound Doctor.

The patient survey data shows that after viewing materials, 88.65% of respondents reduced their GP visits. In addition, patients reported that appointments which were booked but they didn’t turn up to, also fell by 80%.

This could have a huge impact on funding for health services as each GP appointment costs £23.50 based on NHS tariffs per patient. A GP appointment where the patient does not attend costs £36.

Rosie Runciman, co-founder of The Sound Doctor, said, “We are delighted to be working with West Leicestershire CCG for the fourth year running.

“Its commitment to the self-management agenda is very impressive and they are ideal partners to work with to ensure that patients really benefit from the information we provide.

“With around 300 films covering COPD, diabetes, dementia, back pain, weight management surgery and heart failure; there is an unparalleled library of practical advice and information ranging from exercises you can do in your sitting room to gadgets you can use around the home to an indepth understanding of your condition and how it progresses.”

The overall aim of the team behind The Sound Doctor is to enhance the quality of life of patients with long-term conditions by giving them a better understanding and easy access to the best-possible advice.

Adam, a 67-year-old with diabetes, believes the knowledge he has gained from The Sound Doctor materials has been invaluable.

“Good information is crucial,” he said.

I have really appreciated the clarification I got from the films about salts and fats and I’ve also really come to understand the importance that weight plays in diabetes.”

Kevin, 58, is also from West Leicestershire and has diabetes. He said: “I think The Sound Doctor is a really-good resource which I keep going back to. I was very dubious about other online information as I didn’t know where it had come from.”

Clinicians have shown an equally-strong interest in the material.

Dr Darren Jackson is a GP with responsibility for overseeing the long-term conditions workstream across Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland. He said: “I welcome the opportunity to be more involved in the commissioning of local health services to try and help improve the quality of care to the local population within the confines of limited NHS budgets.”

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He added: “I’m struck by the effectiveness of the contribution The Sound Doctor’s team make. It is a very-popular resource for us and for our patients and provides an effective way of providing information to large numbers of people at low cost. I look forward to continuing to work in partnership with them.”