Innovative new health plan puts the people of Barnsley first
10 April 2015

Thousands of people in Barnsley are set to benefit from better healthcare thanks to a new agreement involving the town’s GP practices.

The innovative action plan, the Practice Delivery Agreement, is the brainchild of NHS Barnsley Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG.)

It will enhance GP services for 240,000 patients but ultimately improved health care will benefit Barnsley as a whole.

The PDA works as a partnership between the CCG and the town’s 36 GP practices with a key aim of improving the quality of care patients receive from their GP practices through expertly-trained staff and better resources.

As a result of the agreement, patients will have access to a better range of services, for example the delivery of warfarin clinics within practices, benign prostate treatment and improved treatment of diabetes and heart disease.

Practices will also adopt the ‘Year of Care’ model, which aims to provide personalised care planning for people with long term conditions, by working in partnership with patients and care professionals.

‘Anticipatory Care’ will see GPs visiting the elderly and housebound in their homes or at their preferred place of care and offer medication reviews and discussion of end of life care.

A key aspect of the agreement is patient and public engagement, and the PDA actively encourages practice patient reference groups which are vital in seeking the opinions of and addressing the needs of the local population.

The PDA will also target the demographic health challenges faced by the people of Barnsley and will actively address and reduce health inequalities in the town.

Another aspect will see GP practices being encouraged to operate in an environment of continuous learning, training and development to ensure a continuing improvement in standards. A GP Fellowship scheme, is also being developed, aimed at attracting more GPs to the area.

Dr Nick Balac, Chair of the CCG said: “The PDA is totally unique and a culture changer. The great work that is going on within GP practices currently is almost like pieces of a jigsaw, and the PDA pulls all those pieces together. This is our vision Working together with practice managers has helped shape the PDA and co-production is its strength.

“The PDA also encourages practices to work more closely together, sharing skill sets and even on occasion, premises – such as with anti-coagulation work.”

He added that the idea that sparked it was acting on the vision of the CCG which is “Putting Barnsley people first.”

“Barnsley people deserve better in terms of investment in primary care service delivery, preventative healthcare and social investment. Historically Barnsley has always been at a disadvantage by under-funding but the national thrust is to invest more in primary care, and the PDA allows us to focus our priorities. Around 90 per cent of consultations are taken in primary care.

“The PDA is all about investing in and delivering sustainable improved quality of and access to out-of-hospital care through a well-trained, better-resourced workforce. I am delighted that all our GP practices have signed up to it so enthusiastically.”

As a result of the PDA, all GP practices will also have a fully-trained safe-guarding lead. Better integrated IT systems and how buildings and estates can be used more efficiently are also being explored by the CCG.

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