Anima - changes from Thursday 18 April


Group consultations (also known as shared medical appointments) are when a group of patients with the same health condition have their consultation with a healthcare professional in a group setting. They are typically made up of roughly 12 patients, depending on the condition, and last between 60 and 90 minutes.

Group consultations have been around for many years. There is evidence to show that patients benefit from sharing and learning from each other’s experiences, improving motivation and self-management of their health. There will be plenty of time for discussion so we get to know what matters to you about your health, and how we can work together to achieve this. Group consultations also allow patients and healthcare professionals to spend more time together, building a relationship and improving satisfaction for both groups.

There will be the opportunity for a 1:1 consultation with the clinician if there is something further to discuss relevant to the condition that could not be discussed during the group consultation.

Medical practitioners are duty-bound to maintain a patient’s confidentiality unless they are concerned that significant harm may come to the patient or someone else. Patients attending the group are required to read and sign a confidentiality agreement at the beginning of the group consultation. This ensures that patients do not share information outside the group including, for example, who else attended and other patients’ medical information.


There is a group facilitator who runs the group. This may be a member of the practice reception team, a care coordinator, a social prescriber, or a dietitian. The group facilitator will make members of the group welcome and lead the introductions. They will explain how the group will run and note what your individual goals are from the group session. A clinician will then join the group. This may be a GP, nurse, or other healthcare professional.

There will likely be a discussion board which will contain information and talking points relevant to the condition. This may contain relevant test results. For example, in a type 2 diabetes consultation, this would include blood pressure, urine results, HbA1c and cholesterol levels.  Each patient will then have a consultation with the clinician. This will be in the group setting with the other patients listening in and perhaps sharing their experiences too.

The Group Facilitator will then bring the consultation to a close. They will assist patients in setting individual goals and will also gather feedback so we can continually improve the group consultation experience.

If you feel that you would benefit from a group consultation, please speak to our reception team.

Ponteland Medical Group


Ponteland Medical Group
Ponteland Primary Care Centre
Meadowfield, Ponteland
Newcastle, NE20 9SD

Northumbria Primary Care