Author: Roger Jones

Jerry cross the Mersey: Hunt at the RCGP Conference

Jacket off, shirtsleeved, roving the stage, Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt must have said “The truth is…” three times in the first three minutes of his RCGP Conference speech in Liverpool this Thursday. By the standards of recent Tory party speeches this one was pretty good. He thanked GPs for doing a good job and reiterated the mantra “If general practice fails, the NHS fails”.

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Happy birthday to the NSPCR

The NIHR School for Primary Care research has celebrated its 10th anniversary. Shortly after the National Institute of Health Care Research was established in 2006, with the aim of supporting applied health research for patient benefit, one of the first research Schools to be established was the National School for Primary Care Research, in 2006. The School initially consisted of the five top-scoring University Department of general practice in the most recent Research Assessment Exercise: the composition of the School has changed over the intervening years, so that it now consists of the primary care departments from Bristol, Cambridge,...

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“The best of times, the worst of times” for general practice

SIMON STEVENS AT THE NAPC As well as signalling the end for QOF, the keynote speech at the National Association of Primary Care by Simon Stevens, chief executive of NHS, was a ringing endorsement of his strong support for general practice. Newly and handsomely bearded, Stevens confirmed that this new investment in general practice of £2.4 billion will be made by 2020, and encouraged the audience to “rattle the cage” to make sure that the promises made for additional funding for primary care are honoured in the CCGs’ investment plans and in the Sustainability and Transformation Plans, which are...

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Acute primary care in an integrated NHS

Professor Roger Jones is editor of the British Journal of General Practice. The tsunami of chronic disease management – the ageing population, rocketing rates of non-communicable diseases, and increasing complexity – have dominated much of the debate about the future of general practice and of the NHS. The crucial function of general practitioners in making accurate, timely diagnoses in patients presenting with acute symptoms is easily overlooked, yet is at the very core of primary care. The implications of this for mending the fractures in the system and for the design of integrated models of care came home to...

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The elephant in the room: how are we going to fund the NHS?

Professor Roger Jones is editor of the British Journal of General Practice. Last weekend The Times published a leading article which described the financial straitjacket in which the NHS finds itself, and suggested that the additional funding required to keep the service going should be found from sources outside general taxation. I wrote a letter supporting this view, pointing out that other healthcare systems, with perfectly respectable health outcomes, some better than ours, work on a combination or some variation of co-payment and insurance mechanisms. none of which, importantly, equate to privatisation. I described this discussion as an elephant...

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