As part of the NHS Long Term Plan, a new 5-year contract has been put in place for GP surgeries, encouraging them to work more closely with neighbouring practices by forming Primary Care Networks (PCNs). As such, The Marshside Surgery has now joined forces with our colleagues at The Corner Surgery, Churchtown Medical Centre, Roe Lane Surgery and Norwood Surgery, to form 'North Southport Primary Care Network' (PCN).
This heralds the beginning of an exciting 5-year journey. Whilst each of the core network practices will retain its own identity and patient list, in time it will mean more collaborative working and place each PCN at the heart of an Integrated Care System. This will incorporate hospitals, community providers, social care organisations, voluntary and faith groups, and other primary care providers such as pharmacists and dentists.
Many observers regard this as one of the most significant changes to the way general practice is organised since the creation of the NHS. Dr David Smith GP Partner of The Corner Surgery has been elected as the Clinical Director of our PCN. The main focus in 2019-20 is to lay the groundwork and to develop our objectives for future years.
In time, the funding for evening and weekend GP appointments will be moved to PCNs and the NHS is committed to providing funding for PCNs to employ additional staff. This will include clinical pharmacists, social prescribers, physicians associates, first-contact physiotherapists and paramedics. These changes should increase the number and range of appointments available to our patients, making it easier to get the care you need.
To read more about PCNs, please click here.