More than seven million patients across the country will benefit from innovative pilot schemes that are trialing improvements to GP access, funded by the £50m Prime Minister’s Challenge Fund.
Twenty GP collaborations have been awarded funds to run pilots for one year, to transform primary services in their areas and improve the patient experience.
A wide variety of innovative ideas are being trialed including opening 8am-8pm on weekdays and weekends; better use of telecare and health apps; more ways for patients to book appointments including e-mail and Skype; and new services like care coordinators, to manage care for patients with complex needs.
NHS England is now working with the pilots as part of a 12-month national development and evaluation programme, and sharing learning with all practices across England to spread innovation.
Alongside the pilots, we are also looking to establish a number of ‘associate networks’ to the Challenge Fund that link other innovative bids within regions and nationally, to share learning.
For more information about the individual pilots and the PM Challenge Fund see:
About the PM Challenge Fund
In October 2013, the Prime Minister announced the Challenge Fund to improve access to general practice and test innovative ways of delivering GP services. NHS England was asked to lead on selecting and managing the pilot schemes.
In December 2013, NHS England invited GP practices to submit their ‘expressions of interest’ (EOIs) to be one of the pilots, before selecting the final list of schemes.