Agenda item

Report of NHS Devon, attached


The Committee considered a report of NHS Devon on the General Practice Strategy, which set the vision for General Practice in Devon for the next 10 years. This Strategy would replace the previous iteration, published in 2019, much of which has now been achieved, but which required substantial revision to incorporate learning from the pandemic and to reflect the increased pressure on the system and consideration had also been given to the national picture.


In terms of the process involved in developing the Strategy there had been wide engagement with key partners and stakeholders. A number of emergent themes arose from the engagement, for instance, differentially investing to tackle health inequalities, consistency of access and support to users when accessing technology, a strong focus on the prevention agenda and supporting practices with a Greener NHS plan. The new Strategy had therefore been developed taking into account the output from the engagement.


A further opportunity was now being given to all parties who contributed (both in terms of healthcare partners and patients) to review the draft Strategy document and provide further comments.


Members’ comments and discussion points with the Director of Out-of-Hospital Commissioning (NHS Devon); and the Primary Care Medical Director, Devon ICS, included:


·         the themes arising from engagement which included differing investing to tackle health inequalities, consistency of access and support for other using technology, and a strong focus on prevention and supporting practices with a Greener NHS plan;

·         improved integration across Primary Care and social care and with acute services and the value of the Primary Care Partnerships (PCNs) with specialised support and services for GPs;

·         the gender balance within the GP service and the reasons in relation to the proportion of admin staff undertaking a diverse range of duties to support clinical services; and need for further clarification on the number of Full Time Equivalents (whether the same as Whole Time equivalents); and the need for clarification on the ICS survey question with only 13.6% reporting good access (including getting through on the telephone) when compared against the IPSOS survey which reported that 80% of Devon patients were satisfied with their offered appointment and noting that this IPSOS survey showed Devon’s ranking for general patient care and experiences as the second best nationally; and general concerns about the perception of the high numbers experiencing significant delays in appointments;

·         the view of a Member on the need for further data and analysis in relation to waiting times, times on the phone, number of consultations (quantative information) etc and there was also a lack of reference to qualitative information in relation to the ‘patient experience’ for example; and potential also to use of more digital tools such as e-queue management systems;  and explanation from the Officers about the difficulties in relation to direct access to information from GP practices;

·         the need to develop improved signing-posting to appropriate services etc within the Strategy;

·         the improving collaboration work across the PCNs with local and Devon-wide practice manager forums for example which promoted effective working;

·         the need to further review the process for commissioning additional GP services within growth points and new communities through S106 (and Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL)) funding which could form part of the PCN Estates Plan and the need for the ICS to be fully cognisant of District Local Plan Reviews; and which Officers acknowledged could be a further area of discussion with local Members.   


The Chair thanked the Officers for their report and answers to Member questions.

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