Speaking at the National Association of Primary Care event, Dr Luke Twelves, a GP and founder of Hunts Commissioning, said relationships with secondary care were complex.
'It takes time to for effective relationships to develop and evolve,' he said.
'Hospitals are not coherent places, and having one consultant (on a board) is useful ... but they do not represent secondary care by any stretch.'
Dr Twelves said there were many models of working together, but he said the most effective relationships were based on a shared understanding and common goals.
'Relationships usually work fastest if they are win-win and everybody gets something out of it. That is particularly true around primary and secondary care,' he said.
Katherine Ward, chief executive of UnitedHealth UK, said the NHS needed to see 'innovative examples of partnerships' between local entities and GP consortia working together.