From the 1st October 2022 the government has changed the GP contract and practices will need to open for longer and on Saturdays. This arrangement is being delivered by groups of practices in Primary Care Networks ( PCNs). We are part of the South Blaby and Lutterworth PCN which consists of Wycliffe Medical Practice, the Masharani Practice , Hazelmere Practice in Blaby , Northfield Medical Practice in Blaby and Countesthorpe Health Centre. Under the new arrangement each PCN has to deliver a set number of additional hours based on the population size of the PCN. As we have a PCN list size of around 43,000 we need to offer as a PCN 43 more hours a week between 6.30pm and 8.00pm Monday to Friday and 9 am until 5pm on a Saturday .
THESE HOURS WILL BE FOR PREBOOKED APPTS ONLY AND THE PRACTICES WILL NOT BE OPEN FOR PHONE CALLS , URGENT ON THE DAY APPOINTMENTS OR HOME VISITS DURING THESE ADDITIONAL HOURS.
What does this mean for the patients of the Wycliffe Medical Practice ?
We will be open every week on a Tuesday evening between 6.30pm and 8pm for pre booked GP and nurse appointments .
We will be open every fourth Saturday morning between 9am and 1.30pm for pre booked GP and nurse appointments .
At present the rota for which Saturdays we will be open hasn’t been finalised so we can’t share which dates these will be. The new arrangements also apply to Saturdays during bank holiday weekends so for example this year one of the practices will open on Christmas Eve between 9 and 1.30pm and New Years Eve between 9 and 1.30pm as whilst not bank holidays they are classed as working Saturdays . These will again be allocated on a rota basis so we will be opening every 4th Bank Holiday Saturday – at present we don’t know which ones we will be doing as the rota has not yet been finalised .
During each opening session we will have several clinic staff working to ensure that the PCN covers its quota of 43 hours across the week .
The other days and times will be covered by the other practices in the PCN being open on a rota basis and by pharmacists doing structured medication reviews.
At the Wycliffe Medical Practice we will be offering coil insertions, implants ,joint injections and long term condition appointments during these additional hours as we know we have significant numbers of patients waiting for these .
The practices in the PCN are expecting delivery of covid vaccines and flu vaccines in late September and are planning Saturday morning covid and flu clinics throughout October and into November – these will be done in lieu of the new normal Saturday morning arrangements for as long as the covid /flu clinics continue and so we would not expect the routine Saturday morning appointments to start to be offered until late November /early December 2022 . The Tuesday evening appointments will be offered from the 1st October 2022 onwards .
This new arrangement is being imposed by the Government and having to be delivered by the same workforce that we have now and so this is a significant undertaking for practices. Some PCNs have sub-contracted the work – we are sub-contracting some of it but the practices in the PCN are covering the vast majority of the required hours themselves .
The Wycliffe Medical Practice