Open Letter March 2022

The Cranborne Surgery Lake Road Surgery sign


The Practice has seen a considerable increase in requests for GP appointments recently. Please be assured we are doing our best to meet this surge in demand. However, we know that some patients may be frustrated by holding in a phone queue to have their call answered or waiting for a callback.

To address this, we have worked with our Patient Participation Group (PPG) to identify and implement a variety of options designed to give our patients more choice and flexibility in how and when they contact and interact with us over the past year. As well as more traditional methods of phoning or visiting the surgery, it’s often quicker and easier to contact us by email at

With input from our PPG members, we have developed a range of other ways of contacting us online. The GP online services we offer allow patients to book in person or telephone consultations with a GP, appointments to see a Nurse or Healthcare Assistant and order repeat prescriptions.  Online services can also give patients direct access to their medical records and test results, which was previously only possible by phoning or visiting Cranborne or Lake Road surgeries. The much-publicised NHS App also offers the ability to book or cancel an appointment and more using a tablet or smartphone. And for social media users, the Practice also provides the ability to message us through our Facebook page.

The main advantage of using GP online services is that they are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.  The online services we offer are designed to supplement, not replace, the standard services provided by The Cranborne Practice. We are aware that some patients may not wish or feel confident enough to use GP online services. However, whenever possible, we ask our patients to consider using our website ( or other digital health apps to obtain information, advice, and access to the relevant GP services we provide to our patients.  Doing so helps the Practice team focus on their most vulnerable patients who rely solely on the telephone to contact them.

We appreciate the support shown by our PPG members in helping us raise awareness and help patients take advantage of our GP Online Services.   Patients may wish to download and view the Guide to GP Online Services developed by our PPG, which we have published on our website here:>> 

The last few years have been challenging for NHS staff and patients alike.  GP surgeries across the country are currently under enormous pressure, facing increased demand alongside the delivery of the life-saving COVID-19 vaccination programme whilst at the same time experiencing recruitment issues. Despite this, in February, primary care consultations increased by 5%.  General practice activity across Dorset has returned to above pre-pandemic levels, providing a range of face-to-face and remote consultations to meet patient needs. 

We want to thank our patients for your continued help, support and understanding at this time.

The Cranborne Practice & Lake Road Surgery

March 2022