Building capability for improvement

Our capability building programme is grouped into four key offers.

  • Introducing quality improvement – shorter set programmes*
  • Leading quality improvement – longer set programmes*
  • Topic based sessions – shorter modular sessions
  • Primary Care Improvement Community

* Priority for participant programmes is given to PCNs and practices engaged in the Access Improvement programme, delivered by the Time for Care team.  Remaining places will be made available to applicants from NHS primary care organisations (networks and practices) held on a waiting list.

Topic based sessions are facilitated virtually and open to all.

The Primary Care Improvement Community, a 9,000 member strong network, is open to all.

All are fully funded and available to PCNs and general practice teams at no charge.

Introducing quality improvement

As at February 2021, over 630 staff had received training and coaching support to develop their skills and capability to lead colleagues and teams through change, coupled with the opportunity to network and collaborate with other practice staff across the country. A strong stream of capable primary care improvement leaders in general practice is emerging.

What is quality improvement?

In a virtual setting, a two-hour learning session that provides an introduction to making changes using quality improvement approaches, for those in general practice who have no prior knowledge or experience of quality improvement.  It will introduce practical approaches to making changes; how to speed up getting things done and helping them to stick.

Participants will be given a basic overview of the key components of successful change, with an introduction to the Change Model for Health and Care and how quality improvement techniques can be used to make changes locally.

Fundamentals of change and improvement

In a virtual setting, a programme over two full days or three shorter days for those working in general practice, including GPs, practice managers, nurses, senior admin, project managers and facilitators, working directly with general practice.

It will show step-by-step how to use a number of tools and techniques, helping to build skills and confidence to make changes in your practice. Participants bring a live problem to work on, which should be relatively small and focussed, to apply the learning directly, for example, reducing the amount of correspondence handled by GPs or improving the care navigation process.

General Practice Improvement Leads programme

The General Practice Improvement Leads programme is an accredited personal development programme for those working in general practice, including GPs, practice managers, nurses, reception managers and senior administrators. Participants gain new perspectives, skills and confidence in using improvement science for service redesign and leading colleagues and teams through change.

The programme is six days (three x two-day modules) with support sessions and an optional coaching call, all held virtually. The programme incorporates interactive elements, action learning and personal project work, with participants leading a small-scale change priority in their own practice, for example, improving document workflow, optimising the triage process, increasing the uptake of online consultations. Participants learn alongside others in general practice, with the additional benefit of sharing experiences and learning from each other.

You can learn about what impact the programme has made by viewing case studies from past participants.

Primary Care Network Improvement Leads programme

The programme is for those with lead roles in PCNs, such as GPs, nurses, practice managers and PCN managers, to help achieve large scale change across their networks.  The programme is designed to:

  • equip participants with transferable practical improvement skills for working at scale, to help achieve improvement goals in a complex environment
  • support participants to understand the key principles for large scale change and how to apply these to their network’s challenge, helping create transformational change.

The approach and focus is on PCN-wide challenges and opportunities.  Participants must bring an improvement challenge/priority to work on, for example, optimising the use of new roles across the PCN or improving access to diabetic care for the PCN’s hard to reach population, presenting their progress and learning at the end of the programme.

The programme comprises six full days (three two-day modules) with support sessions.

Applicants must have a working knowledge of the Model for Improvement and measurement for improvement prior to joining the programme, which can be gained from other elements of the wider capability building offer, such as What is QI or Fundamentals of Change and Improvement.

Topic based modules

These are shorter modular online sessions each of up to 90 minutes, focusing on specific improvement topics and approaches.  They are designed to enable those working at practice and PCN level to explore specific topics such as demand and capacity and workforce redesign, to help tackle local challenges and opportunities.  The modular approach is flexible; some modules are standalone, while others are part of a series, ranging from introductory level to greater depth in some of the topics. To get the most benefit from the modules, we would recommend completing an introduction to quality improvement (such as Fundamentals of Change and Improvement) first.

Please speak to your development adviser for more information.

For more information contact the Time for Care team.

National Primary Care Improvement Community

Our Primary Care Improvement Community has over 9,000 members (as of February 2021), and growing. It is a community for all who work in and around general practice and primary care across England, and are involved in facilitating innovation, improvement and transformation. This spreads good ideas more quickly, helping to accelerate local change and support change leaders in sustaining progress and their own resilience.

Change leaders often feel isolated, particularly in primary care, where there are relatively few people skilled in improvement science and change. Having experienced quality improvement, many do not have other opportunities to maintain or grow their skills. Recruiting and mentoring others is hard work.

The Primary Care Improvement Community seeks to address these challenges by providing a community of practice supported by regular networking and access to the latest developments in improvement and change. Facilitated by the Time for Care team, it creates rich peer-to-peer networks. We listen to and work regularly with our members to provide a programme of activity that is relevant and timely. This includes events that provide multiple opportunities for members to share and learn together, augmented by online networking and webinars.

Whilst most members have previously accessed support from the Time for Care team, we welcome all who are interested in being part of the community as a way to continue learning and making local improvement.

Membership of the community is free. To join the community please contact the Time for Care team.