RCGP launches inquiry into future of general practice

The RCGP has launched an inquiry into the future of patient care in general practice to support its campaign for a shift of NHS resources into primary care.

Mike Farrar: former NHS Confederation chief executive to chair RCGP inquiry
Mike Farrar: former NHS Confederation chief executive to chair RCGP inquiry

A panel of experts will examine how the NHS can best provide care at a time of constrained resources and meet growing demands.

The panel will be chaired by former NHS Confederation chief executive and DH head of primary care Mike Farrar.

Other panelists include representatives of the National Association for Patient Participation, Royal College of Physicians, NHS Confederation, Lloyds Pharmacy, and the RCGP.

College chairwoman Dr Maureen Baker said the enquiry was a ‘fantastic opportunity’ to recommend what needs to change to help GPs continue to deliver high standards of care.

‘We hope that the findings will help inform the RCGP’s landmark Put patients first: back general practice campaign, which is calling for general practice to receive 11% of the overall NHS budget by 2017,' she said.

The 'Inquiry into patient-centred care in the 21st century' will assess three key questions:

  • How do models of NHS care need to change to deliver better patient outcomes, as cost effectively as possible, for the growing number of people living with multiple long-term conditions?
  • What does this mean for the way in which NHS resources are deployed across health economies in a financially constrained environment?
  • How can the role of general practice best be developed to support the new models of care required and what policy levers and financial mechanisms should be put in place to deliver these at the scale and pace needed?

Panel chairman Mr Farrar said: ‘General practice is key to a fully-functioning, cost-effective NHS and it is important that we look into and promote ways that it can be sustainable in the future while working in the best interests of the patients and population it serves.’

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