• Run by the NHS North of Tyne Consortium, made up of North Tyneside Primary Care Trust, Northumberland Care Trust and Northumbria Healthcare Foundation Trust.
  • Focused on people with diabetes in North Tyneside, Newcastle and Northumberland, in the north of England.
  • Set out to engage primary care in care planning for people with diabetes.
  • Project information was shared with commissioning groups, and training days were provided for GP practice staff.

The project was run by the NHS North of Tyne Consortium, made up of North Tyneside Primary Care Trust, Northumberland Care Trust and Northumbria Healthcare Foundation Trust. Care planning had already been piloted in the area and North of Tyne used a two-stage approach to engage primary care.

The commissioning lead visited practice-based commissioning groups to share project information and win support. An information pack was then produced and distributed to practices with an invitation to the diabetes lead GP and practice nurse to attend Year of Care training days.

Patient focus group events were held, which centred on:

  • describing the Year of Care project and its aims and implications
  • the changes patients could expect
  • seeking their views on gaps in services
  • finding out how those gaps might be filled.

Benefits

Patients who had been involved in care planning reported that they preferred this method because it offered more control over the decisions made about their care. As a result they are more likely to keep to a mutually agreed care plan and treatment is likely to be more successful.

Patients also reported that receiving test results before their annual review reduced levels of stress and anxiety and gave them time to think about what they wanted to discuss.

The team developed a training package for GP practices, to help them reorganise care for people with diabetes. It had very positive feedback.

The Year of Care project has influenced commissioning for other long-term conditions.