Darzi says one-size-fits-all polyclinics 'not the answer'

Polyclinics will not be imposed on the whole of England, health minister Lord Ara Darzi has confirmed.

Lord Darzi
Lord Darzi

Each PCT has been told to create a new GP-led healthcare centre by the end of the year.

But Lord Darzi told GP that London-style polyclinics were 'the one thing they're not'.

'I think I've made it very clear that London's needs for primary community services are very different to the needs of the rest of the country,' he said.

The proposed 'Darzi centres' have been widely interpreted as polyclinics or super-surgeries. But Lord Darzi said they may have been 'misinterpreted by PCTs or by other stakeholders for other reasons'.

He argued that, although the centres are compulsory across England, they should be flexible enough to meet local priorities.

'Where they are placed, what type of services they provide, is a local issue that needs to be discussed, not just with the clinicians, but with the patients who use the service,' he said.

He pointed to pathways identified in SHA responses to the Darzi review as examples of areas where investment could be prioritised.

jonn.elledge@haymarket.com

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