Medacs Healthcare

MAY 22/2014

BMA: GPs are interested in new methods of collaborative working

People working in NHS GP jobs are interested in exploring new collaborative working opportunities as a means of improving productivity and the standard of care they provide.

This is according to a new survey of 1,555 general practitioners carried out by the British Medical Association (BMA), which revealed that 35 per cent of those polled are considering joining a network or federation, while 22 per cent have already done so.

Almost two-thirds of GPs - 63 per cent - said the reason they wish to develop a network is to bid for enhanced primary care services, such as those focusing on sexual health and contraceptives, smoking cessation or drug dependency, which would be commissioned by clinical commissioning groups.

The survey responses also shed light on the fact that GPs who want to explore these options feel they would benefit from greater support. 66 per cent of those polled said they would find further guidance helpful, while 60 per cent would be interested in legal advice, 43 per cent would like HR support and 44 per cent would benefit from project management support.

It was also revealed that many doctors do not feel they have the time to investigate the benefits of these collaborations due to their work responsibilities, once again underlining the need for greater resources to be made available to help general practitioners achieve peak efficiency.

Dr Richard Vautrey, deputy chair of the BMA's GP committee, said: "We need to look at new ways of working that might enable practices to get the most out of limited resources and work more effectively together.

"Forming federations or networks is certainly not the solution for every practice and there is no one-size-fits-all model that would be suitable for every area, but it could offer real opportunities for many practices in really difficult situations."

This comes after the BMA launched a new campaign earlier this month called Your GP Cares, which aims to highlight the importance of funding the creation of additional GP jobs across the country.

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