Review to reinvigorate partnerships will deliver final report by end of 2018

A government-backed review to reinvigorate the GP partnership model will deliver an interim report by early autumn and final recommendations by the end of December, its GP chair has revealed.

Review chair Dr Nigel Watson
Review chair Dr Nigel Watson

Review chair Dr Nigel Watson, the chief executive of Wessex LMCs, told GPonline he was working with the chairs of the RCGP and GPC to draw up an overview of what the review would cover.

The New Forest GP - appointed last month to lead the review - plans to begin visits to primary care services across England from the end of June to identify systems that have proven successful, to learn from areas facing problems, and to talk to GPs on the frontline.

The review is in the process of establishing a mechanism to allow GPs and other interested parties to submit comments to feed in their ideas and concerns. Its remit, the government has said, is to 'look at how the partnership model needs to evolve in the modern NHS'.

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Speaking exclusively to GPonline, Dr Watson said he was convinced that the partnership model had not yet reached the end of its life, despite a sharp decline in numbers of GP partners in recent years.

Dr Watson is working with the chairs of the RCGP and GPC on an overview of what the review will consider. A wider reference group will be consulted on establishing 'what the issues and potential solutions will be', and a working group of GPs and others will be consulted regularly, he told GPonline.

Part of the process will involve opening up to consultation and an attempt to engage with the profession via social media. By early autumn Dr Watson expects to produce an interim report, with final recommendations by the end of December 2018.

Dr Watson said he was honoured to be leading the review, despite admitting that 'a bit of me is fearful'.

He added: 'It is an opportunity to find solutions to the problems we face. I am keen to work with others to deliver real changes that will be supported by the frontline and help general practice as it evolves over time. But to have any validity, it has to have an impact for front-line GPs in practices.’

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