In-surgery job advisers set to treble

A UK pilot housing employment advisers in GP surgeries is being expanded to 40 locations as part of a £13 million project, according to the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP).

The aim of the free service is to offer patients advice on returning to work or finding a job and on what they can do to avoid being out of work because of a long-term condition.

The pilots in Bridgend, Wales, Paisley and Argyll in Scotland, and Somerset, Gateshead and East Lancashire in England, will be independently assessed in March 2008. But the DWP appears happy with the schemes because it plans to roll out to 12 new locations at a cost of £5 million over three years.

Employment advisers will work from more than one surgery in each area, bringing the total reach to 40 practices involving up to 4,000 patients.

The pilots mirror a scheme launched by employment charity Tomorrow's People, which oversees employment advisers in more than 80 surgeries in London, Bristol, Liverpool, Glasgow and Devon.

One of the charity's first advisers was installed at the James Wigg Practice in Kentish Town, north London, in 2002.

Dr Roy Macgregor, a GP at the practice, said the adviser worked one day a week offering 50-minute sessions on help with CV development, interview techniques, career development and training possibilities.

Writing in his practice newsletter, Dr Macgregor said: 'More than 200 patients have used the service and 87 per cent of patients who have completed the full programme have moved into employment or training. Of those, 82 per cent are still in employment 12 months later.'

The new advisers are expected to start work in the second half of 2008. No details of location have been revealed.

The remaining £8 million is to fund an advice and support service for smaller businesses as part of a new approach to help people with stress and other mental health conditions find and keep work. It is unclear exactly how this will work but the DWP said the possibility of providing support and advice for GPs as part of efforts to more closely align employment and healthcare services would be explored.

Health secretary Alan Johnson said: 'This package is designed to help people keep well and in work.'

neil.durham@haymarket.com

Department of Work and Pensions

Comment below and tell us what you think 

Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Register

Already registered?

Sign in

Follow Us:

Just published

GMC sign

Overseas-graduate GPs fare worse in medical tribunals due to lack of legal help

UK GPs who graduated overseas face worse outcomes in GMC cases because they are far...

Woman using HRT patch

Practical advice for GPs on prescribing HRT

GP menopause specialists Dr Louise Newson and Dr Olivia Jones provides an overview...

Vaccination tracker

UK COVID-19 vaccination programme tracker

GPs across the UK have led the largest-ever NHS vaccination programme in response...

NHS logo on tiled wall

PCNs falling short on 26,000 staff target and need more flexibility, GPs warn

Government plans to bring in 26,000 staff by 2024 to support general practice are...

Talking General Practice logo with picture of Dr Ed Cantelo and Dr Tommy Perkins

Podcast: How two GPs set up a business to advise doctors about finance

Talking General Practice speaks to GPs Dr Tommy Perkins and Dr Ed Cantelo from Medics...

Houses of Parliament

MPs from all parties call on government to do more on GP shortage

MPs from all parties have warned the government that it needs to do more to tackle...