The Health Foundation has selected five projects to take part in a new programme to explore how to increase continuity of care within general practice.
The Increasing Continuity of Care in General Practice programme is supporting five large-scale GP practices and federations to carry out targeted improvement work to increase continuity in their practices. The projects will explore what continuity of care will look like, considering relationships between GPs and patients, and also examining whether better information and management practices can help increase continuity with the aim of bringing benefits to both staff and patients.
This programme is inspired by recent Health Foundation research which demonstrated that patients with ambulatory care sensitive conditions who see the same GP a greater proportion of the time have fewer unplanned hospital admissions. The programme has been developed with the advice and support of the Royal College of General Practitioners.
Sarah Henderson, Assistant Director of Improvement Programmes at the Health Foundation, said: 'We are excited to be able to support these teams as they develop their quality improvement projects over the next two years. Despite the significant pressures faced by those working in general practice, each of the teams is committed to finding ways to increase continuity of care and to demonstrating the benefits that it can bring.'
Each project will run for up to two years and each project team will receive up to £250,000 of funding to support the implementation, evaluation and dissemination of findings from their work.
The selection of these projects is currently subject to contracts being finalised with the lead organisation of each project.
The projects are:
1. How well do I know and trust my doctor?
2. Continuity by design
3. Improving continuity of care for patients in South Cumbria
South Cumbria Primary Care Collaborative
4. Continuity counts – a whole-practice approach to improving GP relational continuity
St Leonard’s Research Practice
5. Relational continuity for general practice patients with new and changing symptoms
Valentine Health Partnership
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