A new iPhone app, called ‘GP Ratings’, has been launched to help people choose which GP surgery they should register with.
Developed by FineFettleApps.com, the app provides information on all 8,344 GP surgeries in England by mining the 11m responses from last year’s Department of Health’s national GP Patient Survey.
The app, which is available from the Apple Store for £1.49, simplifies the data into star ratings and allows people to find their ten closest surgeries either by entering their postcode or by using the inbuilt GPS technology.
Once a GP surgery is selected on the app, people can view the surgery contact details such as the address and telephone number, and the number of male and female GPs.
Developer Mark Barrett told eHealth Insider that the product was born out of “frustration” at the care his family received after switching GP practices.
“We had moved home and we could never really book appointments and we just ended up getting a little frustrated.
" After searching online, I realised that people didn’t have enough feedback from other patients and I wanted to develop an app that aided patients and the general public.
“After trawling through ten different spreadsheets and nearly 8.5m rows of data I managed to find a better surgery - but I realised not everyone knew this information was available,” Barrett said, after developing the app over a five-month period in his spare time.
The app has extracted the most important information from the spreadsheets with Barrett choosing what he describes as his “favourite indicators” from the study, ranging from “how many patients would recommend their surgery” to “how many patients are happy with the surgery opening hours."
On average, each surgery has 130 survey respondents for each of the seven questions and Barrett told EHI that the data had been converted into a star rating so it was “easy for people to interpret."
The app was developed using Apple’s Xcode developer tools and makes use of Government Transparency Data.
Barrett, who is also a service delivery manager for the Health and Social Care Information Centre, said that he is already working on a new release, which will include the latest GP Patient Survey, which was released last week.
“Transparency is about benefiting the end user and sharing the information to help people make better informed decisions. Most people don’t know that this information is out there so that they can make these decisions,” he said.
© 2012 EHealth Media.
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