He branded practice nurse training 'a disgrace' as he gave evidence to the All Party Parliamentary Group on Primary Care and Public Health.
Debating the progress of Labour's 10-year NHS Plan, published in 2000, Professor Field said primary care could have achieved much more if more effort had been made to improve skill mix.
'We haven't achieved what we could have done in that period,' he said. 'If we had made an effort to increase nurses' training and their continued professional development, we could have done much more.'
Christine Hancock, former general secretary of the Royal College of Nursing, added that the government was 'obsessed with buildings, rather than real people'.
Comment below and tell us what you think