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£2.4bn GP support package ‘remains on track’ two years in, says NHS England

The £2.4bn rescue plan for general practice - the GP Forward View - is 'on track' two years after it was announced, NHS England has told Pulse.

In an opinion piece submitted to Pulse, primary care director and deputy medical director Dr Arvind Madan also said they are now 'beginning to see some of the fruits' of the investment.

Alongside a breakdown of progress on each funding stream - detailed and rated here - NHS England pledged that by 2021, all practices would have benefited from every single one.

Dr Madan said: 'I am pleased to report the funding trajectory for the GPFV remains on track, despite the many pressures on our NHS.

'Twenty-four months in to this five-year programme, which some have described as “the biggest change management programme in the history of English general practice”, we are now beginning to see some of the fruits of this investment, and whilst I understand that not every practice is seeing the benefit of every one of the comprehensive package of initiatives yet, we remain clear that all practices should feel the benefit of all its elements by the end of the programme.'

He said this comes as 'in the last two years' examples of progress included:

  • 800 estate and IT schemes completed;
  • 2,100 practices benefiting from the resilience programme;
  • 176 CCGs engaged in the 'Time for Care' programme;
  • Over 5,000 trained care navigators and 2,100 trained staff in managing clinical correspondence;
  • 'numerous' digital schemes such as rolling out online consulting and Wi-Fi in practices, and more clinicians servicing 111 calls; and
  • over 3,900 more FTE other health professionals in practices than two years ago, including around 500 more FTE practice based clinical pharmacists, 'with over 580 more to follow soon'.

Dr Madan went onto say that support for practices to work at scale, due to be injected by all CCGs by the end of this year, should 'help bring to life the impact of the GPFV initiatives'.

But this comes as researchers have called for more evidence to be gathered about the clinical and financial impacts of new large-scale general practice models being pursued.

It also comes as a Nuffield Trust survey of GPs in December found that most GPs would still be unwilling to give up their contract in favour of one of the new care models.

But Dr Madan said he believed they 'represent a real opportunity to build resilience within groups of practices' and would offer patients 'an enriched version of primary care'.

And he said that while he was 'acutely aware' of issues still being faced by general practice, including with workload, recruitment and retention, there was 'a steadily growing number of practices, that have actively engaged with the [GPFV] programme, that are starting to see the benefits'.

BMA GP Committee chair Dr Richard Vautrey said: 'We will be producing our own two-year analysis shortly, but as we have previously highlighted, the GPFV funding trajectory does not match what is really needed in terms of long-term recurrent investment in to general practice.

'Whilst the additional funding they have provided is welcome, some is not recurrent and a significant proportion is for evening and weekend GP access schemes, rather than properly investing in the core daytime service. To really address the massive day-to-day pressures in general practice and meet growing patient expectations, we need a step change in funding commitments.'

 

 

 

Readers' comments (17)

  • we are indeed on a track.

    no u-turn possible.

    one way to somewhere.

    remind me, why did i get on this train?

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  • Dr vautry is right. Time limited schemes , non recurrent funding followed by the swift departure of managers to anther role is not helping.

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  • Short term like what the BMA said. Nothing has changed. One sided contract imposition. Constant changes and worse of all all dodgy appraisals and manslaughter charges in the process of helping someone. Best to leave this country if possible.

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  • Yesterday had an unannounced visitor who as these wise guys always do - landed up to install wi-fi. Chucked him out - politely of course, as unannounced means he could be anybody from the street and a name of a private company dangling around the neck doesn't mean necessarily the guy is from NHS. BTW , why do we need wi fi for patients - internet cafe? what if somebody hacks into the system or just starts visiting so he can sit and have free wi fi access? Moronic plans and huge wastage of money - seems NHSE is too rich or too corrupt and money is being siphoned to companies associated with NHSE or the ruling government. Does anybody else feel the same or am I being unreasonable?

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  • All is for the best in the best of all possible worlds!

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  • it is an interesting list of achievements, but demonstrates what little respect they have for General Practice or for statistics.

    Whilst there may be 3900 FTE other practitioners how many less Nurses and Doctors are there?

    Whilst there are 2100 staff who have done the 1 hour 'care navigator' course to do what they were already doing is that course of benefit to anyone?

    And these same staff now look at letters? well who was it opening the post before?

    more?

    2100 practices 'benefitted' from resilience funding. £100 for a group of 4-5 practices to hold a meeting is very beneficial, but unlikely to turn the tide of the 'hostile environment' flowing daily from DoH to NHS E to CCG to practices.

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  • If it smells like it, it probably is. We need more money directly in to GP hands, making partnership a genuine aspiration rather than a sinking ship to be avoided, and then things might improve.

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  • Cobblers

    Examples of progress!!!!

    800 estate and IT schemes completed;
    2,100 practices benefiting from the resilience programme;
    149 CCGs engaged in the 'Time for Care' programme;
    2,100 trained care navigators and 2,100 trained staff in managing clinical correspondence;
    'numerous' digital schemes such as rolling out online consulting and Wi-Fi in practices, and more clinicians servicing 111 calls;
    and over 3,900 more FTE other health professionals in practices than two years ago, including around 500 more FTE practice based clinical pharmacists, 'with over 580 more to follow soon'.

    Irrelevant the lot. Frippery. Froth and Bubble. Utter bollux.

    We need GPs and Nurses. Plus an environment that is nice to work in. Clearly not their priority.

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  • Peter Swinyard

    With my Family Doctor Association hat on, I attend the GP Forward View Supervisory Group meetings. Along with the BMA (and, to be fair, usually the RCGP) I do hold their toes to the flames about actually getting hard cash into practices and not trying to do the political stuff about extended access and WiFi (which is bo*****s as you all know). I struggle on. We do achieve something....

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  • I want some of what they're smoking.

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