Releasing time for care

At the heart of our development programme is Time for Care, a programme to help practice teams manage their workload, adopt and spread innovations that free-up clinical time for care, and develop the skills and confidence to lead local improvement.

Since its launch in 2016, demand for the programme has been strong and widespread with 2,416 practices from 177 of 195 CCG areas across England, having taken-up the offer of support as at the end of September 2018.

What impact has Time for Care made already?

Time for Care has helped free-up over 180,422 hours of clinical GP time and 295,000 hours of admin time across 1,619 practices.  Teams have reported that by participating in Productive General Practice Quick Start and Learning in Action, they have released time and achieved a wide range of significant benefits.

  • GP time is being used more effectively; GPs report they are seeing the patients that need their care and spending time on tasks that need their attention.
  • Pressure and burnout has declined, GPs have described being able to more regularly start/finish on time or reduce the amount and frequency of working excess hours, and getting through the daily workload better.
  • Job satisfaction has increased. The joy of working in general practice has been restored, for some GPs we have worked with this has literally made the difference between leaving or remaining in the profession.
  • Teamwork and morale has improved for practice teams with staff culture shifting from one where ‘this is the way we’ve always worked’ to ‘we can make things better.’
  • Meaningful collaboration between practices is developing, where practices are realising the benefits of sharing learning and new ways of working that help them to standardise processes, make efficiencies, improve working relationships and implement new models of care such as Primary Care Home.
  • Patients are benefitting from improvements made from safer and more efficient processes for repeat prescriptions, through to better access and more time with the right member of the clinical team.

Time for Care in 2019

Demand for Time for Care support remains high with many practice teams and groups across the country wanting to participate in the programme.  As a result Time for Care will continue to be available to general practice post March 2019.

Practices who are looking to make improvements focused on one or more of the 10 High Impact Actions for general practice, will be able to access Learning in Action and Productive General Practice Quick Start.  The offer for these programmes will remain the same, with teams having the opportunity to use both a collaborative approach to learning and improvement which brings local practices together, as well as receiving hands-on individual practice support to release time for care and build improvement capability.

The Primary Care Improvement Community which is over 2,463 members strong will continue as a national network.  Members will be able to access the latest developments in improvement and change, as well as connecting and sharing their learning with each other.  The community will grow and be a vital resource for staff who have already participated in Time for Care and want to maintain and grow their skills further to carry on making local change.

The continuation of Time for Care will give practice teams who have yet to participate in the programme the opportunity to take-up the offer of support. In many cases this will be extending local practice coverage beyond those who have already participated and achieved measurable impact including release of GP and administrative time, greater collaborative working locally between practices, and training of individuals to confidently lead change and improvement.

For more information email england.si-enquiries@nhs.net.