It has now been two years since the GPFV was introduced on 21 April 2016, and we have produced a report that analyses its impact. The GPFV is an initiative that NHSE introduced to support general practice aiming to provide the most far reaching support offered in a decade, over a five-year period, across five key areas:
- Care redesign
- Practice infrastructure
Download the report
GPFV impact and delivery since implementation
Some positive impact has been seen from the GPFV since its implementation. For example, we are starting to see more clinical pharmacists in practices, training for reception and clerical staff is improving and more GPs seem to be entering training. However, GP recruitment still falls short of the annual recruitment target initially set in 2015/16. The BMA is calling for a renewed focus on workforce planning, recruitment and retention to turn around the current crisis in the GP workforce. Measures to invest in the general practice team are welcome, but need recurrent funding in order to be sustainable.
It is also unclear if investment is on track. Current funding for general practice falls £3.7 billion short of the BMA’s target of 11% of the NHS budget. Although additional funding for the NHS was committed in the Autumn Budget 2017, the amount going to general practice in real terms has not increased. In addition, continued practice closures are an indication of the need for greater investment.
Fundamentally, there is a widespread view across general practice that the GPFV does not go ‘far enough, fast enough’ and does not have the confidence of GPs. Practices have also reported complex and bureaucratic processes to access funding and support.
There is a strong case for undertaking a wholesale review of the GPFV, and current discussions in Government about establishing a long-term funding settlement for the NHS provide an opportunity to put in place a much more substantial package of measures that prioritises getting recurrent funding into frontline care.
Download the report
GPC engagement and monitoring
GPC is committed to ensuring that the promises of investment and support made by NHSE in the GPFV make a positive difference to practices.
GPC has been engaging with the development and implementation of the GPFV through various groups such as the GPFV oversight group, LMC reference group and the workforce advisory board, which allow us to follow up any concerns directly with NHSE.
Alongside this, we have been keen to understand the progress of the delivery of the GPFV on the ground. To do this we have:
- Surveyed BMA members working in general practice to understand how they have experienced the last two years of working at the frontline.
- Surveyed LMCs in March 2018 regarding the implementation and delivery of specific funding and support programmes at a local level.
- Engaged directly with GPs regarding the implementation of the GPFV, via a series of roadshow events conducted in early 2018.
To ensure the GPFV can make a positive difference to practices it is important that we understand, as far as possible, where money is being spent and support is being provided. We will continue to monitor how it is reaching its intended destination throughout the timeline of the GPFV, and this process relies to some extent on data provided by NHSE.
Download GPFV - one year on report
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