Chair blog – 2016 year round-up


2016 has been a good year for the Suffolk GP Federation.  I am extremely proud to have been its Chair.

The success of the Federation is down to the qualities of our non-executive team, our board and all the staff that work for us.  I have always believed that an organisation should be assessed on what it does, rather than on its values or mission statement and our services showcase that.  The key strength is a board that represents the range of views in Suffolk general practice.

The organisational structure of the Federation continues to grow and becomes more resilient.  Key appointments of a Chief Nurse, Sheila Smythe, and Executive Director Dr Nick Rayner ensure we remain a truly clinically-led organisation.

GP+ has continued to have a significant impact, providing additional appointments to practices.  We have had 17,500 contacts since starting and only five complaints (this must be a record).  We have a 98% “positive” Family and Friends Test.

Diabetes – we continue to stay on track with the diabetes clinical KPI’s despite increasing numbers, and have addressed system pressures by revising the foot pathway.  The advantage of a long contract really helps making these profound changes.  We have unrivalled knowledge of the whole diabetes system in North East Essex, including inpatient services.  Practice engagement remains high.

Our clinical services continue to deliver well and our ultrasound contract has been extended for a further three years.  We are looking at integrating the pain service more with the hospital provider.

Our leadership programme has supported several cohorts of GPs and PMs, many of whom have taken on local leadership roles.  Truly satisfying.  We will continue to support these.

The Federation has been able to represent a view of general practice both at the STP and the East and West ACO meetings.  The Federation also has a pivotal part in developing general practice at scale.  Considerable progress has been made with the Suffolk Primary Care, Ipswich, Deben Health and Remainders groupings.

The financial situation of the Federation has also improved with the extension of the GP+ contract for three years.

A formal annual review will be issued at the end of the financial year.

Thank you for your continued support and best wishes for the New Year.

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