In October, Matt Hancock, Health and Social Care Secretary, declared his support for GPs heralding them as “the bedrock of the NHS”. He highlighted their role in preventative medicine and set-out a vision for networked primary care services that are better integrated and supported. The Government’s commitment to the NHS has been shown in the £20 billion additional funding it will receive, some of which will go to GPs. Central to the vision for the NHS is thriving community care centred around GP practices where patients are treated in the community without needing to be in an acute setting. Essential to this is having the right infrastructure. Technology is always at the fore-front of these conversations, but what about the buildings?In February the British Medical Association surveyed 4,500 GP practices and found that 40% of GPs do not think their premises is adequate for patient care. This is a staggeringly large number and makes the Government’s vision of increasing care in the community difficult, with 70% of GPs in England and 60% in Scotland saying their facilities are too small.
One of the big challenges with improving GP premises is of course funding. Some is available from the Government, and further pressure should be put on the Government to increase this. Alternatively, GPs can seek private sector support by partnering with organisations such as Medical Centres Development. Currently we are supporting several GP practices within our Primary Care Medical Centre portfolio to expand into new premises. Examples include:
- Trinity Medical Centre, Hove, who have moved into a new building recently;
- St Peter’s Medical Centre, Brighton, where we are acquiring land next to the existing practice and will be building new premises;
- The Glebe Surgery, Storrington, West Sussex, where a much larger fit-for-purpose premises is being constructed;
- Clapham Park Group Practice, London, with a full refurbishment of the premises and a new pharmacy being built.
As well as new developments we offer refurbishment opportunities to practices within the portfolio and, wherever possible build new premises with expansion space in mind.
If you would like to know more about the services we can offer and the advantages of outsourcing the ownership of your GP premises, please get in touch.