Healthwatch responds to plan to get general practice back on its feet
Today, NHS England revealed its plans to fund an additional £2.4 billion per year for GP services by 2020/21 to help improve patient care and access.
The 'General Practice Forward View' includes practical steps to support GP services by boosting staffing numbers, reducing inefficiencies, improving the use of technology and changing the way care is delivered.
Responding to the plan Jane Mordue, Interim Chair of Healthwatch England, said:
“The massive pressure on family doctors at the moment is no secret, so any extra investment will be welcomed by the thousands of people who have struggled to get an appointment.
“But this announcement is about more than just money and an increased focus on technology. It signals a move to create a more flexible frontline NHS that people tell local Healthwatch they want to see, a service where they can access direct and faster care from a whole range of professionals, from practice nurses to pharmacists.
“We know from what people tell us that they want to work with their GPs to redesign services together, and by tapping into this we believe this five year plan could provide a real opportunity to create a more sustainable and consumer focused NHS that ensures people get the help they want and need.”
For two years running, our annual survey of 152 local Healthwatch identified access to primary care services as a top public health and care concern.
We spent 2015 finding out why - asking people about the problems they face and what they want from future primary care services.