Agenda item

General Practice


Jo Turl (NHS Devon ICB) and Alex Deegan (NHS Devon ICB) delivered the General Practice report to the Committee, and discussed:


1)    West End Hub


a)     Collaborative work and meetings undertaken with the three GP practices (Adelaide surgery, Armada surgery & North Rad West surgery) effected by the withdrawal of the West End Hub plans;


b)    Work undertaken to Develop an NHS PCN Estates Toolkit across Devon, identifying opportunities to invest in existing estates, and where there were areas of concern for future sustainability;


c)     Adelaide surgery, Armada surgery & North Rad West surgery had been identified as a top priority for any future funding;


d)    Partnership discussions between NHS Devon, Plymouth City Council, and Landlords had ensured that there were presently no risk of eviction for the three above GP practices;


e)     The Director of Estates, in consultation with the national team, had identified Primary Care and Community Neighbourhood Hubs as a priority for the Next Spending Review 2024.


2)    Mayflower Medical Procurement


f)      Following procurement, the Mayflower Medical contract had been awarded to Fuller and Forbes for 10 years;


g)     Staff would be retained by the new provider, ensuring employment security;


h)    Timelines for transition were currently on track;


i)      A comprehensive communication campaign was ongoing.


3)    GP performance


j)      National targets for ‘same day’ GP appointments were 35%. Plymouth performed higher, although standards across practices varied. Plymouth also performed best in Devon for ‘appointments within 2 weeks’, and second highest in the country for number of appointments offered per population size;


k)     The two GP practices closest to Derriford hospital produced the highest ED attendances;


l)      The national Primary Care Access Recovery Plan had been launched to improve patient contact and manage patient requests on the same day. The programme aimed to empower patients, modernise practices, reduce bureaucracy, and build capacity within the system;


m)   18 practices were now utilising cloud-based telephony, which enabled patients to know their position in the que, and receive a call-back if necessary;


n)    170 additional roles had been recruited, and this would raise to 190 due to Government funding;


o)    NHS Devon were aware of sustainability concerns for some practices in Plymouth, and were working to identify opportunities for estate expansion and modernisation;


p)    Patient satisfaction in Plymouth was below the national and Devon average. This was a target for improvement;


q)    Diverse improvement activities were being undertaken across Primary Care networks and a deep dive had been undertaken.


(Councillor Reilly left the meeting at this time)


In response to questions, the Committee discussed:


r)     The use and role of Physician’s Associates in supporting GP demand;


s)     Fuller and Forbes’ commitment to improving patient access and satisfaction performance;


t)     The assessment and assurance criteria that had been utilised during the Mayflower Medical procurement;


u)    Primary Care contracts issued by NHS Devon incorporated funding for building rental and maintenance;


v)     Primary Care challenges were a national issue, and as such, national plans were in place to drive improvements. Challenges included an aging population, increased complexity of need, impacts of the Covid-19 Pandemic, and workforce issues;


w)   Data for total patient consultations was comprised of all forms of communication, including telephone conversations, e-consults, and in-person appointments;


x)    The introduction of a maximum daily/weekly caseload for GPs was based on safety assurance concerns, and was designed to prevent fatigue and/or errors;


The Committee agreed to note the report.







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