We have been in discussions with West Bar Surgery and Principal Medical Limited (PML) considering how we might work more closely together to improve services for all patients. PML is a not-for-profit organisation owned by local GPs, who run Banbury Health Centre and other services to support primary care. These include the ECP home visiting service, Hospital at Home and ‘Hub’ appointments in the evenings and weekends.
We have been working alongside PML for many years as members of the GP Federation NoxMed. This has helped to expand the services available to patients, as well as improving access to primary care services.
The pressures on primary care have been increasing recently and we believe that by bringing together our services with the support of PML we will be able to offer a better, more sustainable service for all patients. For example, larger practices can provide improved access to a range of specialists in the practice (such as pharmacists, physiotherapists and mental health workers).
This also frees up time for GPs to focus on the services that only a doctor can provide. Coming together in this way also means that the practice administration needs can be better supported by the PML central office in Banbury, again freeing up GP time.
Whilst details of the proposal have not been finalised and are subject to continued discussion, Oxfordshire Clinical Commissioning Group (who fund health services across Oxfordshire) are in support of our proposal.