The Ministry of Health and the Health Quality & Safety Commission have introduced patient experience measures for primary care using an online survey called the primary care patient experience survey.

About the survey

The survey is conducted nationally every three months*. Patients enrolled with and seen by participating general practices in the survey sample week each quarter may receive a survey invitation via email or SMS. Children under 15 years are not surveyed.

The survey enables patients to have a voice that health teams can hear through a direct and timely link. The survey provides your PHO or practice with access to real time reporting via your secure log in through any internet browser. This is funded by the Ministry of Health.

Participation in the survey by practices is a recognised source of evidence towards meeting Indicator 9 of the Foundation Standard and Aiming for Excellence: The practice includes patients’ input into service planning.

*The survey was redeveloped in late 2019 and early 2020 and was not run in February 2020. It was intended that the survey would be restarted in May 2020, however this was delayed due to the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. The survey was restarted for the August 2020 quarter.

Resource: Frequently asked questions

Resource: Primary care patient experience survey: flyers for patients

Resource: Primary care patient experience survey: patient management system instructions

Resource: Primary care patient experience survey: poster for practices

Resource: Primary care patient experience survey: protocol for reviewing patient comments

Resource: Primary care patient experience survey: videos for in-clinic waiting room

Resource: Survey timetable

How to participate in the survey

There are two sets of instructions; one for participating PHOs and one for general practices. Be sure to select the correct document specific to your organisation.

Resource: Primary care patient experience survey: PHO guide to getting started

Resource: Primary care patient experience survey: General practice guide to getting started

Accessing your reporting portal

Your survey results are available through a secure online portal:

If you cannot remember your password click on ‘forgot password’ and follow the prompts. If you are at a general practice and do not have a login email or username, please contact your PHO administrator.

You can contact the portal help centre at

Website: About Ipsos our national survey system provider

Using survey results for quality improvement

Resource: From PES to PDSA: A guide to using the patient experience survey portal for quality

Resource: Foundation standard/Cornerstone accreditation – how does the survey contribute towards this? 

Resource: Patients' experience of using hospital services: An analysis of trends in inpatient surveys in NHS acute trusts in England, 2005–13

Last updated 27/04/2021