Dentists, GPs, opticians and pharmacists in Bury are working more closely to provide people with co-ordinated high quality care, at the right time, in the right place and by the right health care professional.
The approach is described in NHS Bury Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCG) Primary Care Health and Wellbeing Strategy, published in December 2016. A public facing summary version of the strategy has now been published.
The strategy focusses on the contribution of local Primary Care services to deliver Bury’s (Locality Plan) vision to ensure people live happy, healthy lives and are able to maintain their independence for as long as possible.
Primary Care is a term used to describe the first and main point of contact a person usually has with the health service, it refers to services provided by dentists, GPs optometrists and pharmacists, and the highly skilled workforce that supports them. Every day in Bury around 4,800 people visit a community pharmacy and 1,000 will have an appointment at their GP practice.
To support Bury’s vision, GPs and other Primary Care teams will work in a more co-ordinated way and develop closer connections with other health and social care services. There will be more of a focus on prevention of ill health in Primary Care; people will be supported to take a more active role and be confident in their approach to preventing diseases and self-management of health conditions. Where care is needed, this will be person centred and co-ordinated with people more familiar about which Primary Care service will best meet their needs.
To help make this happen, in the coming months all General Practices in Bury will have a Care Navigator in their team to support patients to access care that best suits their needs. Where a patient might book in with their GP Practice now because of a chesty cough, in the future they will be encouraged to visit their local community pharmacy at a time convenient to them to receive professional advice on how to manage their symptoms; where a patient may benefit from a social or fitness opportunity to boost their mental or physical health and wellbeing, they will be signposted to local support networks and opportunities to match up with what matters to them. In addition, people using high street pharmacies will be provided with advice on how they can reduce their risk of becoming ill and to maximise their wellbeing.
By these services working together, local people will receive consistent messages across all Primary Care services.
Dr. Jeff Schryer, local GP and Clinical Director for NHS Bury CCG said: “Bury has an ambitious vision for the future to ensure people live happy, healthy lives and are able to maintain their independence for as long as possible. There is an abundance of talent and expertise within our Primary Care services here in Bury to help make this happen. Our vision is for high quality care that will be provided by motivated, talented, happy and healthy primary care professionals attracted to work in Bury. We also want to make sure that patients know when it is best to use each of these services, and to be supported to have a more active role in their own and their families health by giving them the information and support they need.”