Reducing Patient Frustration with Effective Call Management

With current legacy phone systems patients can often be met with an engaged tone or join a seemingly endless queue, increasing their frustration when they get through to reception.

Before joining a queue, patients are welcomed with a recorded message that offers them options that ensure they are put through to the correct department – often reducing the burden on reception staff.

Surgery Connect’s patient callback feature provides an option for callers to request a callback when they have reached the front of the queue, thus leaving them free to get on with other more productive tasks or to rest if they are feeling unwell.

Surgery Connect Call Management Features

  • Contact centre technology and call handling supports call management across GP hubs, federations and CCGs, enabling patients to access healthcare services through a single phone number or surgery-specific numbers, and supporting extended access provision.
  • Auto Step In adds additional members to Groups to assist during busy periods.
  • Call routing can distribute calls across multiple sites and groups, and be linked to the needs of specific patients, for example providing the latest clinic times for patient cohorts.
  • Telephone triage is supported, enabling efficient forms of consultation.
  • Call and video consultation recordings and history are linked to individual patient records.
  • Single-click dialling of patients from clinical records saves time and avoids errors.
  • Patient Callback allows patients to be automatically called back, rather than have to wait in a queue.
  • Automated voice reminders can be set up, helping in times of high demand.
  • Calendar events can be added to control hours and days of operation, and automatically signpost callers to alternative numbers.
  • Surgery Connect is resilient: mobile phone back up means that calls can be routed to mobiles, in case phone lines lose connectivity.
  • Administrators can listen in to calls, helping support staff in training.
  • Inbound and outbound video calls are supported, and we are working on the use of AI to help process calls.

Patient Callback

Patient Callback is an alternative way of queuing, reducing patient frustration.

Patient Callback allows patients to request an automated call back from the surgery when their call would have ordinarily reached the front of the queue, addressing the NHS push for calls to be ‘free at point of access’ for patients.

By requesting a callback instead of waiting in a queue patients can continue their day rather than having to wait on the phone. It can potentially save the patient money if they are on a PAYG mobile as they don’t have to use their credit to wait in the queue.

The fair and intelligent queue distribution, ensures callers speak to someone in the same time regardless of whether they wait in the queue or book a callback. Callers can ring back at any point and rejoin the queue at the position they saved.

Recording telephone conversation and being able to play these back has been a huge asset, especially for staff training and dealing with complaints.

Patients like the Patient Callback facility and are very appreciative of the ring back

Some of the recent improvements to the reports have saved me a lot of time.

Cindy Grace-Toms, Assistant Practice Manager, Buttercross Health Centre

Surgery Connect Call Recording

Call recording with Surgery Connect helps protect the integrity of staff and patients. Recordings can play a major part in providing clarity of information to help resolve disputes and encourage mutual respect.

Providing better patient services is a constant goal for medical practices and recorded calls provide a useful audit trail that can be used to help resolve disputes, demonstrate compliance and in training to identify and share best practice, leading to improved performance and patient satisfaction.

Resolve Disputes

Protect staff with easy access to tamper proof evidence of ‘who said what’ to help resolve misunderstandings. Call recording provides clarity which enables disputes with patients or carers to be resolved quickly and amicably, pre-empting serious and costly dispute escalation.


When used in training call recordings help identify and replicate best practice, leading to increased staff knowledge and confidence. Areas where training is required can be identified and performance managed, to provide better care and information to patients over the phone.

Reduce Errors

Check vital details, such as clinical advice, prescriptions, or change of contact information to reduce errors, with fast access to search and playback.  Recordings capture conversations that provide clarity of information and an audit trial, that can be used for legal medico legal purposes.

Encourage Respectful Conversations

Informing callers that you are recording conversations helps deter threatening and abusive behaviour towards staff and encourages mutual respect. Recorded calls can be easily located, by day, date, time or telephone number, retrieved and listened to / played back as required.

Looking for support with your Patient Callback?

Transform your Communications with Surgery Connect