Improving access to services, delivered at, or close to home, is a key strategic priority for Welsh Government and is central to the Primary Care Model for Wales.
On 20 March 2019, the Minister for Health and Social Services announced the Access to In-Hours GMS Services Standards.
The standards set requirements on GP practices in terms of minimum expectations relating to access, including increasing digital communications by March 2021.
The standards serve to build awareness in the public domain around what people can expect from their practice, which are:
-People receive a prompt response to their contact with a GP practice via telephone.
-Practices have the appropriate telephony systems in place to support the needs of people avoiding the need to call back multiple times and will check that they are handling calls in this way.
-People receive bilingual information on local and emergency services when contacting a practice
-People are able to access information on how to get help and advice.
-People receive the right care at the right time in a joined up way which is based on their needs.
-People can use a range of options to contact their GP practice.
-People are able to email a practice to request a non-urgent request.