Eltham Hospital: Greenwich Musculoskeletal (MSK) Service

In June 2017, Healthwatch Greenwich used our power of Enter and View to visit the Greenwich Musculoskeletal (MSK) Service at Eltham Hospital.
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The Greenwich MSK service is provided by Circle. The clinical staff comprises of 3 Extended Scope Physiotherapists (ESPs), 1 GP with a Special Interest (GPwSI) and 9 Consultants. On average, the service handles 2000 new patient referrals per month. 

Summary of findings


Eltham Hospital is a newly built building which is set back off the street, 5 minutes walk from the main high street. It is clearly signposted and well served by several bus routes from different areas of the borough. The internal decoration is clean and fresh and the area is well lit by natural light, through large windows. There is a good sense of space which didn’t feel over crowded. The waiting room space is shared by two GPs and outpatients. Drinking water and magazines were available in the waiting area. There are parking bays at the back of the building and the entrance has level entry and step free access. There is a drop off and pick up point in front of the main entrance and a local pay and display car park within 2 minutes walk.

From the observations made we found it was not overly clear where the reception desk for outpatients was located. This is due to the area being shared with two GP practices, their reception desks are located directly in front of the entrence. The main reception for outpatients is located down the on the right-hand side. There is only a small printed sign on A4 paper that indicates that out patients are to check in at the main reception. There are also two electronic check-in screens for the GP practices which could be confusing for patients wanting to check in.

Appointment booking/referral

The feedback we received regarding the referral process was positive, especially concerning the waiting times for appointments. It was also noted that appointments were convenient and easily changed if the date and time was not suitable. 4 out of the 6 people we spoke to were attending their first appointment. When asked how long did they waited to receive confirmation of their referral 4 people said it took ‘2 weeks’, 1 person said ‘3 weeks’ and 1 person said ‘4 weeks or more’.

Assessment process

Most people we spoke to were really content with the assessment process and the information they received in their first appointment. We should note that most people we spoke to had just been for their first appointment and therefore to get an informed decision about if the information was subsequently adequate would require a follow up with these individuals. When asked how the patients would rate the assessment process by the MSK service, 2 people said ‘Very Good’ and 4 people said ‘Excellent’.

Treatment received by staff

The non-clinical staff at the service (e.g. receptionists) treatment of patients was rated as ‘Very Good’ by 2 patients and ‘Excellent’ by 4 patients.

The treatment from the clinical staff at the service was rated as ‘Very Good’ by 2 patients and ‘Excellent’ by 4

Involvement in decision making

4 out of 5 (one person did not respond to this question) said they were ‘Fully’ involed in making decisions about their care and treatment and 1 person said they were ‘Not sure.'

Overall service satisfaction

When asked how they would rate the quality and overall experience of the receiveing the MSK services 2 people said, ‘Very Good’ and 4 people said ‘Excellent’.


If you need this report in an alternative format, please email info@healthwatchgreenwich.co.uk 

Eltham Hospital: Greenwich Musculoskeletal (MSK) Service E&V report

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