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Tackling the workload crisis in general practice

by in Funding, GP Practice Management, News

Primary-care-foundationA year ago, NHS England launched ‘Making Time in General Practice’ highlighting the increasing workload crisis in general practice. The Primary Care Foundation, who produced this report with NHS Alliance, have now been asked to follow up this work in two ways; repeating a survey about the current bureaucratic burden in practices and extending an audit of potentially avoidable appointments (initial results showed 27% of GP consultations could be managed in other ways).

The survey is short and simple and allows practice managers to offer direct feedback about the administrative tasks that take up time and how they might be managed better.  This includes how practices are paid, contact with hospitals, as well as the full range of tasks take time and divert energy away from direct patient care. The last survey led to immediate changes and this time we have built in the opportunity for you to meet up with national leaders and make your voice heard. The survey is at bureaucracy survey

Robert Varnam, head of general practice development at NHS England said “This is a real opportunity for practices to shape General Practice Forward View work to reduce burdens. It’s vital that we have real data about the big areas where further changes could be made in the system. The last survey shaped priorities for the Forward View and led to immediate changes.  One example was that we changed the Standard Contract for all NHS Trusts to stop blanket policies that force re-referral and reduce other sources of workload for practices.

Chaand Nagpaul, Chair of the BMA’s General Practice Committee, added “We welcome this timely opportunity for practices to make known the realities of bureaucracy affecting General Practice, and whether NHS England driven changes over the past year have made a noticeable difference to practice workload. The BMA’s recent survey of more than 5,000 GPs paints a deeply worrying picture with eight out of ten GPs saying that excessive workload was affecting the quality of patient care they could provide. We need this bottom up information to inform immediate and necessary changes to support GPs at this highly pressurised time.”

 

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