Black, Minority and Ethnic (BME) Communities - GP Accessibility & Registration Report 2018

Find out more about the experiences of local BME patients and the accessibility within GP services across Darlington.
A man in a reception area


Our report focussed on the difficulties BAME community members have in registering with a GP in Darlington, the support and standard of care they are given when using their GP surgery, and the provisions in place to address language barriers for BAME patients. We spoke to a mixture of services users. 

Booking appointments over the phone and completing preappointment health questionnaires in the practice was also difficult for service users due to low English language skills.
— Staff member - Healthwatch Darlington


The most important concern that has emerged during our study is that GP practices in Darlington are not sufficiently recognising the struggles that BME residents may be facing when trying to register, accessing appointments and completing application forms/ documents when faced with speaking no or little English. BME residents have provided us with a clearer insight into what matters to them the most. We recognise that some practices in Darlington provide good provisions to meet the needs of all patients with positive feedback contributed in some cases. A large proportion of qualitative data however highlights a need to review the current translation service and initial support in place for patients.


We would like to thank the involvement of Darlington Assistance for Refugees (DAR) and Sajna Miah (Healthwatch Darlington, Health Connector Volunteer) for sharing the views and experiences of refugees and BME residents living in Darlington.


Black, Minority & Ethnic Communities GP Report 2018

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