Dear Members, Colleagues and Patients,
As some of you are aware I have now come to the end of my term as Chair of the Federation.
It has been a privilege and pleasure to lead the Federation and support the practices across the borough in this ever changing landscape that we have seen especially through recent times with the Covid pandemic – I cannot say it has been easy but it has definitely been a worthwhile experience with plenty of learning!
I have worked with a fantastic team and board directors who have all helped support and steer me in my role as chair.
There have been many highlights over the five years but to name a few, seeing the progression of the range of services that we are now able to provide from the inception of EAS, the Pan Barnet Events bringing the borough and system partners together, to getting CQC registered, supporting PCNs, helping provide research, working with training hub, our patient group as well as being a support throughout the Covid pandemic to practices.
It has been great to have collaborated, supported and been able to build relationships with many of our local system partners and providers across North Central London especially as we all now move into the integrated care system.
As we go into this new phase from April, there is a lot of uncertainty an challenging times ahead for GP practices but I am sure as a borough we will rise to the occasion along with the continuous support from the federation as they also move into a new phase of change.
I wish the Federation team and its new chair Dr Ahmer Farooqi all the very best for the future and I look forward to seeing how it develops and grows further as an organisation!
Take care and stay safe and well!
Dr Anuj Patel
Welcome Dr Ahmer Farooqi!
It is a tremendous privilege to have been selected as the next chair of your Federation. Anuj will be a hard act to follow and I would like to thank him for the last 5 years of leadership. In that time, he has overseen the growth of the organisation into one that delivers multiple services at scale, is a respected voice of general practice in Barnet and continues to focus on practice support. He has led an excellent team through the recent pandemic which allowed the Federation to step up as an effective and responsive provider to help with the challenging environment we all found ourselves in.
I hope to continue to steer the Federation through the next phase of its development. We are all aware that this is an uncertain time for general practice and we are feeling extremely vulnerable in our practices. I am committed to ensuring that we continue to represent all our members’ interests in discussions at the ICS alongside our PCN leaders. Together, we will need to continue to work collaboratively to ensure that general practice in Barnet has the strength and resilience to overcome the challenges that lie ahead. If any of our members have any concerns or issues related to services or support provided by the Federation, feel free to pick up the phone or email me.
Dr Ahmer Farooqi
Help reviving Patient Participation Groups (PPGs)
Emerging from the pandemic, it is clear that many practices have seen little, if any, activity within their PPGs during the past two years. Other than support such as stewarding for vaccination clinics, patient involvement has not been practical, with practices under intense pressure, physical meetings ruled out and only a few PPGs prepared to hold sessions electronically. BPPN has continued quarterly meetings by Zoom, but reduced attendance and increasingly brief reports were evidence of the limited role open to PPGs.
However, the BPPN committee has maintained regular dialogue with the Federation, NCL CCG, Healthwatch and Community Barnet, with monthly meetings and other exchanges of information. BPPN has thus been active and used extensively as the conduit for information to and feedback from PPGs and practices. Let BPPN support you as your PPG revives to benefit your practice.
BFG Recruiting for BFG EAS service
BFGs will be onboarding new sessional GPs into the EAS service. If you would like to find out more about the onboarding process as well as sessions and how to book them or would like to join the Federation, please email: firstname.lastname@example.org
In October 2021, the Federation went out to the practices with an offer of £53 per Serious Mental Illness Health Check (SMI Checks) completed by hitting all 6 of the assessment. We are pleased to announce a continuation of the service for this financial year. Further information will follow in due course , which will contain the new targets for each PCN.
Extended Access Service (EAS) March Data Pack
Date for your diary
Wednesday 1st June 2022 – Paediatric Update
For further practice support, training information and research updates please see below
Support For Our Practices
Welcome to our vacancy board – Do you have a vacancy or looking for a role in Barnet?
Advertising job opportunities via the Federation website! Practices and professionals seeking job opportunities in Barnet can advertise through our website on our Pan Barnet Noticeboard: https://barnetfederatedgps.org.uk/pan-barnet-recruitment/
Ongoing recruitment for Salaried GPs to work primarily in EAS and other Federation services. If you are interested and would like to be considered, please refer to the Job Description for more details, or email email@example.com.
New Phone System
We are running a project for a system in which the receptionists and GPs working in EAS can log directly into the Federation telephone system, Surgery Connect, through software on the computer.
This system has been upgraded to provide greater integration with the patient’s EMIS record, increasing the ease with which staff and GPs can make and receive telephone and video calls, as well as send and receive SMS messages and images. This Federation will have direct management of the system and can provide greater support to staff working in the service. We have direct access to call logs and recordings which avoids delays when investigating any issues raised within the service.
Following a successful pilot with a small number of GPs, this has now been rolled out progressively to the majority of staff and clinicians working in the Federation services. The feedback has been overwhelmingly positive, with very few issues reported, and the system is now being rolled out to all GPs.
Practice and PCN Support
We recognise that COVID has been a difficult period for the health system as a whole and the Federation Board have been working on initiatives that support patient care. The Federation has been preparing to meet the challenges of post COVID primary care, including re-organising the staff structure and adding new Board members to ensure all PCNs are represented.
The Federation continues to support practices by providing GP cover to practices that request this service. This has been especially useful to the practices most severely impacted by COVID.
There is a practice support working group within the Federation that is looking at initiatives that would aid practices with additional capacity and resource on a long-term basis.
Examples of practice support initiatives that are taking place:
• In hours GP support sessions
• Practice Index (a practice management resource)
• Distributing PPE and equipment
• Additional capacity, which includes extra Extended Access appointments
• Scoping occupational health support offer for practices, currently underway
• Supporting practice managers with regular coffee mornings, including opportunity to share intelligence on hot topics such as CQC and discussions about practice management support tools
The phlebotomy service has been extended by the CCG until November 2022 in recognition of the success and patient feedback of the service. With the extension of the service, the CCG have also made a change to include paediatric patients within the patient cohort that can be seen within the service. Prior to this change, PCNs were unable to report any bleeds completed on patients under the age of 16, however the Federation envisages this will increase patient activity and access to phlebotomy services.
As part of the GP-led phlebotomy clinics, practices are asked to submit weekly data to display: capacity for the week ahead, the number of appointments booked for the previous week and number of appointments attended. Accurate and timely reporting of this data is critical for a number of reasons including:
- A case for change: we hope to use this data to demonstrate the demand of the service to build a case for longer-term funding. Without this evidence, this case is significantly weakened and continuation of the scheme is less certain
- Governance: as part of the diagnostics workstream, the CCG is required to submit monthly highlight reports to give an overview of phlebotomy capacity across NCL, identify issues and risks that may affect the system and put mitigations in place
- Contractual requirements: the contract requires submission of activity data, as such, providers are obliged to provide this information which will be used for the purposes above
- Payment: we use this activity data to pay practices, without accurate and timely data, practices risk not being paid for activity undertaken.
We have found that some PCNs are not providing this activity on a weekly basis as requested. We recognise that this is an onerous responsibility for practices therefore, if PCNs can commit to submitting all of the activity required, the CCG will consider moving to a monthly reporting submission with the caveat that if PCNs repeatedly miss this deadline, will have to move back to weekly reporting for all PCNs.
We propose that we will review the quality of data and submissions in June and if all data is submitted on time and in full, we will move to a monthly process in July.
Extended Access Service (EAS) Appointments Provision and how to Access them
The EAS service continues to go from strength to strength. Our focus remains on increasing the number of face to face encounters and to facilitate this, we:
o Significantly increased capacity for the April and May Bank Holidays
o Utilise remaining capacity rolled over from previous financial year to further increase capacity for the June bank holidays
Appointments are released at the following times:
• Monday-Friday – 10.00 & 15.00 (on the day of the appointment)
• Saturday – 8:00am (on Thursday)
• Sunday – 8:00am (on Friday)
Alternatively, patients can book directly through the appointment booking line – 02039486809 – which is available Monday-Friday 18.30-20.00 and Saturday-Sunday 08.00-20.00.
When booking into this service, please provide updated contact numbers for the patient. This will ensure that the GP can successfully contact the patient to conduct the telephone or video consultation.
Please see attached the EAS appointments booking updated process for step-by-step guidance or for more information on bookings appointments, please email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Extended Hour Service (EHS)
The EHS service remains popular and there is an opportunity to enhance this further through more of the EHS nurse clinics being filled. Please email the Federation Services team for further information: email@example.com.
Training Information and Opportunities
For all Barnet Training Hub events and training opportunities, please visit: https://www.barnetcepn.org.uk/
ACP Education Support
Please click here to see flyer regarding HEE ACP/AP Education support. In addition, see the first London Faculty Newsletter and the faculty update for Primary Care HEE. These flyers have been produced by the Supervision and Assessment Leads from the London Regional Faculty of Advancing Practice.
The London Faculty have also begun to produce a series of short podcasts – regarding all things ACP, see the link for the latest episodes.
Be well, live well and work well in North Central London
A new set of resources and events is available to support the health and wellbeing of Primary Care workers in Barnet, Camden, Enfield, Haringey and Islington. The free and confidential support is available to everyone working in GP surgeries, community pharmacies and NHS funded dental and optometry sites.
Look out for a health and wellbeing pack from NCL Training Hub and KeepingWellNCL arriving at your workplace. You can also download the pack at https://keepingwellncl.nhs.uk/support-primary-care. Watch the animation to find out more and email firstname.lastname@example.org or keep an eye on this website to find out more about Primary Care Wellbeing events.
Barnet prizes in the NCL-wide Valued awards
Barnet has won two awards in the Training Hub’s inaugural Valued awards. The Valued awards recognise that employee wellbeing is inextricably linked to organisational cultures and professional fulfilment. These awards recognise individuals, teams and organisations that have put in place initiatives that support people to thrive in the workplace. The Barnet Vaccine Bus won the Service Delivery award and the Barnet Training Hub received a commended award for its pharmacy training work.
Please contact Sarah Bell for more information: email@example.com
How fully funded apprenticeships can help you or your workforce upskill themselves? – 17th May 2022
Come along to this webinar information session on to find out how you can get a fully recognised and fully funded qualification to further your career. Speakers will include apprentices who can share their own experiences as well as apprenticeship training providers. This session is suitable for all employees in social care and primary care settings.
Please get in touch with Apprenticeship Lead Alice Long firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions
Venepuncture and Cannulation training
This in-house training is designed for nurses to enhance their practice on phlebotomy, It’s runs over 2 dates, and you only need to attend once:
7th June or 4th October 2022 – 9.30 – 17.30