GP surgeries across Northamptonshire will launch new networks next month in the biggest shake-up of primary care services in 15 years.
Sixteen new networks across Northamptonshire will launch from July 1 with some surgeries joining alliances with practices from neighbouring towns.
The new primary care networks – which are part of the NHS 10-year plan – will each have a pharmacist and a new position of social prescriber. These will be professionals who will link up patients with services from the voluntary sector that may boost their health or mental wellbeing, such as walking groups or social clubs.
As part of the contract each network must provide an extended hours provision, although timings will be specific to each different network.
There will be six networks in the north of the county, four in the south and six in Northampton. The population range of each network is between 30,000 to 77,000 and the networks vary in size from two GP practices to nine.
The largest network will be the East Northants CN, which will cover a population of 77,440, and the smallest will be the Rothwell, Desborough and Great Oakley PCN which will care for 33,627 people.
Corby GP Joanne Watt, who is chair of the Corby Clinical Care Commissioning group, said initially patients would not notice very much difference but over time changes may occur.
She said communication about the changes would be sent to patients in the coming months.
She said: “The only thing that might change is the extended hours provision. There is a requirement for each network to provide extended hours and so this may be provided by a patient’s own surgery or by another surgery in the network.
“It has enormous potential and it is about taking the opportunity to see what else we can do with this grouping.”
The recruitment for the pharmacists and social prescribers has begun and people will take up post in the networks soon. There are also plans to bring in physiotherapists, physician associates, support workers and paramedics to each primary care network. The team will move throughout the network during the working week.
The aim of the new networks is to restructure and add capacity to GP surgeries so that doctors have more time to spend with their patients.
Dr Watt said that down the line patients may be offered appointments at other surgeries which are part of the network.
Northamptonshire is one of the first places in the country to have 100 per cent of its GP practices signed up to a Primary Care Network.
When the plan was announced in January Simon Stevens, NHS England chief executive, said: “This five-year deal unarguably represents the biggest boost to primary care in more than 15 years, giving patients more convenient services at their local GP surgery while breaking down the divide between family doctors and community health services. It provides the practical foundation for the big service improvements in the NHS Long Term Plan.”
The new primary care networks in Northamptonshire are:
Northamptonshire Rural PCN (population 49,394)
Byfield Medical Centre, Crick Medical Centre, Greens Norton and Weedon, Long Bucky Surgery and Saxon Spires
Daventry PCN (population 33,674)
Abbey House Medical Centre, Danetre Medical Centre
Brackley and Towcester PCN (population 42,441)
Brackley Medical Centre, Towcester Medical Centre, Springfield Surgery, Brooke Health Centre
Parkwood PCN (population 33,850)
The Parks Medical Centre, Wootton Medical Centre, Denton Village surgery
Blue PCN (population 57,657)
St Lukes Health Centre, Bugbrooke Surgery, Park Avenue Medical Centre, The Crescent, County Surgery, Brook Medical Centre
Royal Parks PCN (population 37,524)
Kingsthorpe Medical Centre, Langham Place surgery, The Pines Surgery, Queensview Medical Centre, Kings Heath Medical Centre
Grand Union PCN (population 66,461)
Abington Medical Centre, Greenview Surgery, Abington Park Surgery, King Edward Road Surgery, Leicester Terrace Health Care
MMWF PCN (population 46,720)
The Mounts Medical Centre, Maple Access Partnership, Weston Favell (Dr Dias), Weston Favell (Dr Molla), Favell Plus
Arc Hub PNC (population 31,019)
Eleanor Cross Healthcare, Millwood Medical Centre, Danes Camp Surgery
M-Web PCN (population 31,395)
Earls Barton and Penvale Surgery, Moulton Surgery, Woodview Medical Centre
Wellingborough and District PCN (population 76,298)
Abbey Medical Centre, Redwell Medical Centre, Queensway Surgery, Abbey House Medical Centre, Castlefields Surgery, Irchester Health Centre, Summerless Medical Centre, Wollaston Surgery
East Northants PCN (77,440)
Harborough Fields Surgery, Rushden Medical Centre, Parkland Surgery, Higham Ferres, Sprigbrook, The Cottons Medical Centre, Marshall Road Surgery, The Meadows, Nene Valley Surgery
Kettering and South West Rural PCN (population 30,156)
Drylands Surgery, Mawsley Medical Centre, Burton Latimer Medical Centre
Red Kite Healthcare PCN (population 58,231)
Linden Medical Centre, Weavers Medical Centre, Woodsend Medical Centre, Eskdaill Surgery
Rockingham Forest PCN (population 67,046)
Lakelands Healthcare, Studfall Surgery (Dr Sumira), Studfall Surgery (Dr Kumar), Headlands Surgery
Rothwell, Desborough and Great Oakley PCN (population 33,627)
Rothwell and Desborough Surgery, Great Oakley Medical Centre