The Eight Phases Time Management Model for GPs
Primary care clinicians face an unprecedented workload today. GPs routinely work 10- 12 hour days, which are usually non-stop whirlwinds of activity. Every minute of the day has some task crammed into it. The number of GPs burning out, leaving general practice or retiring early, are rising. All of us left are looking for a solution to manage our work lives better.
But how can we prioritise tasks when there is just so much high priority work to do? How can we adapt the time management literature geared for a corporate context to a medical setting? How do we accommodate all the RCGP and GMC ideals of patient care when patients’ demands have risen so much? How do we balance medicolegal risk with being more efficient?
The Eight Phases Time Management Model for GPs takes a radical new approach. Based on the different periods of the GP’s working day, different aims for each non patient facing phase are outlined, to match energy with task complexity. Methods to achieve efficiency with patients during clinics are described in depth, based on interviews with fast and slow GPs. Techniques to improve quicker, more qualitative documentation are demonstrated.
Presented by Dr Deen Mirza, a self help author for GPs, this model is derived from interactions with hundreds of GPs and multiple time management techniques tried and tested in real life GP settings.
The essence of this course is articulated as ‘Patient Adequate Care’ and ‘Sufficient Medical Practice’, as opposed to ‘Patient Centred Care’ and ‘Good Medical Practice’, which are beyond the capacity of most GPs to provide in today’s primary care context.
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9.00am: Introduction- Why do GPs need time management skills? What professional standards should we aspire to today?
9.15am: Time Management Principles The Rule of Opposing Outcomes and how 20th century GP paradigms disable us today; Pareto’s Principle and how this relates to understanding our stress levels and time black holes
9.35am: Time Logs Case study: the insight a time log gives into your work pattern and lifestyle; Analysis of your own time log (requirement as pre-course preparation)
9.55am: Time Usage and Aspiration: Group Exercise Recognising your strengths/weaknesses; Articulating your work and life priorities; Identifying your moments of ‘Flow’; Development of your life ‘bucket’ list
10.20am: Overview of the ‘Eight Phases Model’ for Time Management of the GP’s Working Day
11.00am: Phase 1: Early Morning routines: Rejuvenation and Replenishment The power and process of habit formation; Introducing health into your routine
11.20am: Phase 2: The Golden Hour (Pre-Clinic) The psychology of task completion; Categorising your clinic admin/paperwork; Matching task type with energy and time; Avoiding distraction and clinic preparation
11.40am: Phase 3 (+ 5): Morning Clinic- i) The Why and How of Fast/Slow GP Consulting What do fast GPs do differently to slow GPs? Time measurement and articulation; Pathological doctor-patient co-dependency; Enhancing IT skills for quicker consulting
12.20pm: Phase 3 (+ 5): Morning Clinic- ii) Doctor centred consultation models The FRAYED Consultation Model for managing difficult patients with unreasonable demands; Handling multiple problems within a single consultation
2.00pm: Phase 4: The inter-clinic period Managing task lists generated from clinic; Managing home visits over the phone; Emotional ventilation vs peer discussion; Using change/ light tasks as a break
2.20.pm: Phase 5 (+ 3): Afternoon clinic iii) Avoiding common diagnostic errors that GPs make Understanding how pattern recognition and cognitive biases affect us; Understanding how resource pressures and interruptions change diagnosis and management; Focus and creating space to think
3.00pm: Phase 5 (+ 3): Afternoon clinic iv) How to document efficiently Streamlining referrals and reusing documentation; Red flag documentation; Perils and pitfalls of poor documentation; Providing a qualitative context; Ethical boundaries in defensive documentation; Templates and block text
4.00pm: Phase 6: The Danger Zone (post afternoon clinic work) The effect of exhaustion and absent deadlines on task completion; Pros and cons of remote working; Compartmentalisation and task rumination; Apps for reflection/task capture
4.25pm: Phase 7: Evening and Weekend management Life management outside of work; Planning for key family moments; The effect of exercise on efficiency; Non work-related task management systems; Using remote personal assistants; Making time count twice; How to parent effectively with restricted time and energy; Common affluent parent mistakes
4.30pm: Phase 8: Work outside of clinic Making appraisal/CPD labour light; Managing your nhs.net email inbox; Boundaries and alignment
4.45pm: Conclusion: What are the incremental steps you need to make sustainable long term change in your life?