Primary Care – At the heart of a healthier community

Have you read the Programme for Government? published, Tuesday, 1 September 2015

In the Programme for Government we said we will:

  • Begin the reform of primary and community care by testing new models of primary care over the coming year in at least ten sites across urban and rural Scotland. We will work with primary care providers to shape the future of primary and community care and during the next Parliamentary term we will roll out best practice across the whole of Scotland to transform and enhance the delivery of primary and community care services.
  • Ensure that local community-based services to patients are delivered by the appropriate range of health and social care professionals working together more effectively. This will include investing our recently announced £60 million Primary Care Fund to transform primary care building on great examples across the country of providing care for patients at or near home rather than in hospital. This funding will also help to address immediate workload and recruitment issues through long-term, sustainable change.

As set out in the Programme for Government, our aims are based on some simple principles:

  • To deliver as much care as possible at or close to home;
  • To ensure that care is delivered by the individual or team with the most appropriate skills, helping individuals plan for their care;
  • To ensure that people are only admitted to hospital when they are in real need of hospital treatment; and
  • To ensure that when someone is admitted to hospital their journey out of hospital is planned and straightforward.Primary Care has such an integral and important role to play here, and we need you to engage in the debate and help us get it right. Help us build a picture of how this can look in the future. Whatever your role, whether you are a patient, carer, clinician, other staff member, we want to engage everyone.

So what is Primary Care?

Primary care is about those services which provide the first point of care, day or night General practice is a core element of primary care: it is not the only element – primary care encompasses many more health services, including, pharmacy, dentistry, and optometry. It is also – importantly – about coordinating access for people to the wide range of services in the local community to help meet their health and wellbeing needs.

These community services might include a very wide range of staff, such as community and district nurses, midwives, health visitors, mental health teams, health promotion teams, physiotherapists, occupational therapists, podiatrists, phlebotomists, paramedics, social services, other local authority staff and all those people working and volunteering in the wealth of voluntary organisations which support people in our communities

Where do we need to focus?

  • testing new models of primary care over the coming year across urban and rural Scotland.
  • work with primary care providers to shape the future of primary and community care
  • roll out best practice across the whole of Scotland to transform and enhance the delivery of primary and community care services.
  • ensure that local community-based services to patients are delivered by the appropriate range of health and social care professionals working together more effectively.
  • address immediate workload and recruitment issues through long-term, sustainable change.

What do we mean by new models of Primary Care?

We want a new way of delivering healthcare, and our models will extend the care currently delivered by GPs and multi-disciplinary teams to provide a wider range of services for each local area.

Have a look at what is already happening!

Over the week we will share some of the pioneering work already underway testing new models of working with common themes threaded through them:

  • Building strong relationships and networks;
  • Patient at the centre of their care
  • General practice team as co-ordinators of care
  • Developing services to improve the health of the nation

Tomorrow we will start by taking a look at what’s happening in Govan, and will follow up on a range of initiatives across the country over the week.

Question(s)

What does great healthcare outside hospital look like, to you?

What is important to you when you see your primary care worker eg your GP, pharmacist, dentist, optician, community nurse etc)?

Are there ways that your GP and primary care workers could link better with health professionals in hospitals to your improve care?

Do you have any examples of innovative multi-disciplinary work you would like to share?

The Programme for Government’s aims for our work are:

  • To deliver as much care as possible at or close to home;
  • To ensure that care is delivered by the individual or team with the most appropriate skills, helping individuals plan for their care;
  • To ensure that people are only admitted to hospital when they are in real need of hospital treatment; and
  • To ensure that when someone is admitted to hospital their journey out of hospital is planned and straightforward.

As individuals, clinicians, carers, community groups, volunteers, patients, what would it take to meet those aims? And what would need to change around you?

Share your views…………

Published by

Healthier Scotland

The Scottish Government is inviting you to have your say on what a healthier Scotland should look like in the next 10 to 15 years.

2 thoughts on “Primary Care – At the heart of a healthier community”

  1. Amongst the range of learning we’ve gained in the first year and a bit of delivery of the national Links Worker Programme (see link below) is that supporting a culture shift in general practice, engendering an environment where staff are more able to have time to step back from hectic day-to-day duties and, amongst other innovations, build greater knowledge and connectedness with their local communities, takes some time, but is a vital journey to embark on.

    In the words of a participating Practice Manager there is a recognition that “this is an ongoing process, not a one off event… after a year it’s clear to see that our staff are now more open to change”

    A participating GP observed during a recent programme shared learning event, staff across their practice are becoming “more confident in creative, imaginative activity… the practice recognise it is our responsibility to develop the capacities and look after our own wellbeing”

    In my own role leading on capturing the learning being gleaned by the programme I’m excited about continuing to capture the essence of the transformational aspects being brought about as practices, in their own individual ways, work to build the seven capacities that underpin the ‘links approach’ and share this learning widely.

    Another interesting perspective we intend to investigate as the programme progresses is how local communities’ perception of what to expect of general practice/primary care may change as greater links between the practices and local resources of all shapes and sizes are furthered.

    http://www.alliance-scotland.org.uk/what-we-do/our-work/links-worker-programme

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