All ELR GP practices – serving a registered population of around 325,000 patients – are part of the ELR GP Federation.
Over the course of 2017-18, these practices moved from being based in three locality areas to six locality hubs. These now are:
- Oadby & Wigston (Wigston Central, Bushloe, South Wigston, Central, Croft, Severn, Rosemead)
- North Blaby (Kingsway, Glenfield, Limes. Forest House, Enderby, Narborough)
- South Blaby & Lutterworth (Northfield, Wycliffe, Masharani, Hazelmere, Countesthorpe)
- SLAM (Melton, County, Jubilee, Long Clawson)
- Rutland (Uppingham, Oakham, Market Overton & Somerby, Empingham)
- Harborough (Billesdon, Kibworth, Two Shires, Husbands Bosworth, Market Harborough)
The emerging six locality hubs are all developing plans for joint working between and integrating with community, mental health and social care services in their respective areas. The Federation is playing a key role in supporting and facilitating this work.
To address the challenges that the practices face, the hubs have a number of joint working options;
- informal networking and joint hub working
- joint working through a contract mechanism
- vertical integration with an NHS Trust
- soft merger’ of the practices
- hard merger’ of the practices
The practices have decided to form informal networks and joint working hubs to help address the challenges that they face.
These Hubs represent between 35,000 to 60,000 patients and therefore are ideal sizes to develop the benefits of the home first place based holistic care model through integrated working with community and social care services.
The intention is for these Locality structures to support integrated locality working as part of an emerging accountable care system approach.
The key benefits of developing Partnership Hub working include;
- Greater sustainability; securing the services for patients in the respective geographies.
- Potential to offer a wider range of services and greater specialisation.
- Benefit of sharing staff and expertise and building the MDT.
- Ability to create more attractive, flexible and diverse career, training and employment options and greater flexibility in succession planning.
- Potential to standardise administration processes and improve the efficiency and skills of the workforce.
- Ability to develop new models of care / closer integration between community and primary healthcare providers.
- Potential to streamline back office support functions to gain the benefits of greater economies of scale, including; HR, quality, health & safety, finance, IT and comms.
- Create a larger organisation that has more influence in the local healthcare economy and can take on additional services, including out of hospital care, joint ventures with other GP or NHS organisations.
- Create a more secure platform to support extended primary care, improving in-hours access to general practice and out of hours working, as appropriate.
- Form the basis of the Locality Leadership Teams
A large part of the Federation’s work during its second year has been working alongside the hubs – supporting their development and growth with advice, advocacy with commissioners and development of communications and engagement tools.