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NHSE campaign launched to ‘raise awareness’ of non-GP roles in general practice

NHSE campaign launched to ‘raise awareness’ of non-GP roles in general practice

NHS England has launched a new campaign today to raise awareness of non-GP roles available in general practice, including pharmacists, mental health practitioners, paramedics, physios, and social prescribers.

It said that ‘public awareness of the range of support remains low’ and with one in five GP appointments being for ‘non-medical reasons such as loneliness or seeking advice on housing or debt’, it wants to ensure patients ‘get the right care when they need it’.

The campaign aims to ‘increase patients’ knowledge and confidence in the primary care triage process’ and will include educating patients on ARRS roles and on why receptionists ask patients questions about their condition when they contact their GP.

As announced in a webinar last month, it will include a short video of children interviewing different professionals about their jobs in a general practice setting.

Dr Amanda Doyle, NHSE’s national director for primary care and community services, said: ‘Record numbers of people are seeking support from their GP practice, with teams treating half a million more patients a week compared to before the pandemic, and this demand is only going to increase with an ageing population so the NHS must adapt its services to match this need.

‘While people will always be able to see their family doctor when they need to, the NHS is giving people more options with more than 31,000 new staff working in general practice since 2019 meaning patients can get specialist support from mental health professionals, physios, and pharmacists without needing to see a GP first.

‘The health service is also making it as easy as possible for people to contact their GP with 32 million people accessing the NHS app to book appointments or receive test results, so if you need support please come forward for care.’

Primary care minister Neil O’Brien said that general practice is ‘our front door to the NHS’ and this is why NHS England and the Government are expanding the support on offer to patients.

He added: ‘There’s now an extra 31,000 professionals – such as dieticians, paramedics and physiotherapists – working as part of GP teams and providing vital care to patients, or supporting doctors and nurses to do so.

‘GPs delivered about 15% more appointments over the last year compared to pre-pandemic, and that’s the result not just of more staff, but the hard work of teams in general practice.’

TV doctor and NHS GP Dr Ellie Cannon, who is supporting the campaign, said: ‘As a GP, it’s so helpful to have a range of health professionals on hand at my general practice, as it means my patients benefit from a team of specialists that can help them in many different ways.

‘Whether it’s mental health support or help with vaccinations or advice about their bones and joints, having more health professionals means that patients get the best possible care.

‘Remember, by giving us more information about what you need help with when you contact your practice, we can get you the right care you need.’

Earlier this year, North West London ICB launched a similar initiative to explain to patients how general practice is changing and why they may see a different clinical expert in future, depending on their need.

In August, a leading nursing charity warned that the role of general practice nurses (GPNs) is being ‘devalued’ by the additional roles reimbursement scheme (ARRS).

Meanwhile, GP locums have been asked to consider reductions in their expected hourly rate amid a reduction in available roles, in part due to the increase in ARRS staff.


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Please note, only GPs are permitted to add comments to articles

The Locum 19 October, 2023 11:30 am

In future you’ll only be able to see a non-GPs in GP surgeries

Decorum Est 19 October, 2023 2:11 pm

Agree with previous poster but consolation is that you will be able to see an ARSE!

Centreground Centreground 19 October, 2023 5:54 pm

The next generation of GPs should be increasingly concerned at the actions of more senior GPs and the GP leadership within ICBs , the RCGP and especially within PCNs via Clinical directors who have led this race to the bottom and devastation of the career prospects of young doctors by substituting highly trained GP professionals with cheaper, lower qualified and higher risk individuals such as ARR positions who were never designed to replace GPs.
The shortage of GPs often used as an excuse by this self interested group and the ongoing saga of GPs leaving is in no short measure contributed to over the years by these self serving so called leaders and the damaging decisions made by these people over many years and who should in my opinion never have been in these positions.
The tirade of dissatisfaction seen on junior doctor forums /social media is caused in no short measure by these far from satisfactory groups/so called GP leaders and the next generation of doctors will live to suffer the chaos they have caused and continue to cause for decades to come.

Michael Green 19 October, 2023 6:13 pm

Every consultation will end with “book an appointment with the gp”

Past Caring 19 October, 2023 8:53 pm

When the last GP has left the building for good, seeing an ARRS will be the only option.

Sandy Kam 20 October, 2023 8:38 am

I think they are trying to make sense of their own folly. Trying to cut corners will cost the public and added reflection in costs inappropriate referrals,investigations,A&E attendance etc. A dream for partners and contracted health companies as they can easily cut their costs and increase margins under this cover.

Finola ONeill 1 November, 2023 12:46 pm

‘as it means my patients benefit from a team of SPECIALIST that can help them in many different ways.’
‘Earlier this year, North West London ICB launched a similar initiative to explain to patients how general practice is changing and why they may see a different clinical EXPERT in future, depending on their need.’

Words matter. This is Orwellian. GPs aren’t specialist or experts. We are generalists. Pretty well trained ones.
ARSS are neither generalists or specialists. And I am not happy with these lies.
We have an orthopaedic physio who does have specialist experience. Most physios have good msk training. Pharmacists have good pharmacy training so for set tasks like medication reviews they should be called experts.
The rest of the ARSS are neither generalists or specialists or experts and to call them such is duplicitous.
But this government, and by definition its quango NHSE are duplicitous and Orwellian.
Not sure why the TV doctor and ICS are following the Orwellian pathway but can we start stating accurate facts please.
Conning the public is not a good look.
Additional roles assist primary care, most of them.
But to call them specialists and experts is bizarre.