Improving General Practice – A Call to Action

NHS England noted that general practice and wider primary care services face increasingly unsustainable pressures and that general practice wants and needs to transform the way it provides services to reflect these growing challenges. These include:

  • an ageing population, growing co-morbidities and increasing patient expectations, resulting in large increase in consultations, especially for older patients, e.g. 95{79f878acaa41f375dcd804cc8c058b5459a5482f20a3b9f87269b26c8734749b} growth in consultation rate for people aged 85-89 in ten years up to 2008/09. The number of people with multiple long term conditions set to grow from 1.9 to 2.9 million from 2008 to 2018;
  • increasing pressure on NHS financial resources, which will intensify further from 2015/16;
  • growing dissatisfaction with access to services. The most recent GP Patient Survey shows further reductions in satisfaction with access, both for in-hours and out-of-hours services. 76{79f878acaa41f375dcd804cc8c058b5459a5482f20a3b9f87269b26c8734749b} of patients rate overall experience of making an appointment as good;
  • persistent inequalities in access and quality of primary care, including twofold variation in GPs and nurses per head of population between more and less deprived areas;
  • growing reports of workforce pressures including recruitment and retention problems.

NHS England therefore launched ‘Improving general practice – a call to action’  to stimulate debate in local communities – amongst GP practices, area teams, CCGs, health and wellbeing boards and other community partners – as to how best to develop general practice services.  The response to the consultation will influence the future of GP practice.

The key documents that formed the Call to Action for general practice can be found here:

GP evidence pack

GP Call to Action slides

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