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Bexley Mystery Shoppers scheme celebrates success


There was an air of celebration as NHS Bexley CCG’s governing body held its first meeting of the new year. At the governing body meeting (16 January 2020), local residents, Bexley GPs and NHS commissioners came together to mark the fifth anniversary of Bexley’s mystery shopper scheme and to present awards to individuals and teams who have received positive feedback in the past year. Under the mystery shopper scheme, local residents are asked to provide feedback reports on their experience of NHS services. The reports enable the CCG to identify those NHS services that are working well and services that could be improved. NHS Bexley CCG was the first CCG in the country to introduce a mystery shopper scheme. The scheme, launched in 2014 with a pilot of just 36 mystery shoppers, now boasts a membership of 685 Bexley residents. Across the past five years, more than 5,270 mystery shopper reports have been received under the scheme. 

In addition to marking the five year anniversary of the mystery shopper scheme, Dr Sid Deshmukh, chair of NHS Bexley CCG, and Paul Cutler, the governing body’s patient and public lay member presented awards to people and teams who have received particularly positive feedback over the last year. ‘Positive Feedback’ awards were presented as follows:

Individual award

Presented to Giuseppina (Jo) Mounger, volunteer at Darent Valley Hospital. Jo received the award for her work to improve the patient journey for patients who use the hospital.

Healthcare provider award

Presented to Alex Chipperfield, ophthalmology service manager at Queen Mary’s Hospital. Alex receives the award for going above and beyond to take on board constructive patient feedback to make improvements to the patient experience.

Outstanding team award

Jointly presented to Denise Webb, site services facilitator, Queen Mary’s Hospital (QMH) and Helen Manchester, operational manager, QMH services and estates team *


* In the past five years, the QMH site services group, comprised of hospital users, the QMH services and estates team and residents from the communities served by QMH, have worked together on a co-production project to develop the hospital site and the environment of care. The award recognises the group’s dedication to working in partnership with the CCG to ensure patient-centred improvements to QMH.

Commenting on the mystery shopper scheme, Paul Cutler, the governing body’s patient and public lay member said: “I am delighted that we are able to celebrate the success of the mystery shopper scheme. The feedback we receive from mystery shoppers allows us to see how services are received and feel through patients eyes. I would also like to thank all the mystery shoppers who have contributed feedback and in particular Linda Bellingham our mystery shopper champion, whose continued support has without doubt been instrumental in the success of this scheme.”

Dr Sid Deshmukh, chair of NHS Bexley CCG added: “Our priority as doctors and commissioners is to ensure local people have access to good-quality, integrated care. The mystery shopper scheme is an opportunity for us to be able to look at healthcare from a patient perspective. It’s a way for us to find out, in real time, how patients really rate the services they access. This is really important to us because if services aren’t meeting patients’ needs and expectations, it’s the CCGs responsibility to do something about it. And if a service is working well and being complimented by patients, we need to ensure this good work continues so that other patients can benefit from the same care.”

Click here for the 2019 mystery shopper annual feedback presentation.

Visit the dedicated Bexley mystery shopper scheme webpage to learn more or to register as a mystery shopper.