The Department of Health today announced investment of £26.76million in Northern Ireland’s GP services for 2019/20.
The Department’s Permanent Secretary, Richard Pengelly, said: “This further investment builds on the £37.7m of additional funding invested in GP and related services over the last 2 years.
“These significant investments reflect the crucial role General Practice has in delivering health and social care to meet the needs of patients now and into the future.”
The 2019/20 funding includes up to £18.17million for the continuation and acceleration of transformation projects commenced in 2018/19, including up to £11.1million to support the ongoing roll-out of multi-disciplinary teams, £3.5million for a range of elective care services delivered through General Practice and investment of £1.1million in Advanced Nurse Practitioners.
Multi-disciplinary team working involves advanced nurse practitioners, physios, social workers and mental health support staff working alongside GPs to deliver the right care in the right place and at the right time.
A further £2.19million will be available to support the roll-out of the next stage of the Practice Based Pharmacist scheme, bringing the total recurrent investment to nearly £13.19million and over two thirds of the 300 pharmacists planned for General Practice now in post.
Up to £3.9million will be available for investment in GP premises, with a focus on supporting the delivery of multi-disciplinary team working and the expansion of training in General Practice.
In addition, up to £2.5million will be used to address demography and other pressures in General Practice.
Responding to the announcement, Dr Alan Stout, Chair of the General Practitioners Committee in Northern Ireland said:
“This funding announcement is good news for GPs, for primary care and for patients across Northern Ireland.
“The transformation money that has already been invested is beginning to make a difference for GPs, helping to ease their workload and allowing frontline services to patients to be met by a broader range of health professionals who are best suited to addressing a patient’s needs.
“This increased investment will mean that more GP practices will be able to begin the process of transforming the way they deliver services.”
Notes to editors:
- The investment announced today does not include the Department’s response to the recommendations in the report of the Doctors and Dentists Review Body, published on 22 July 2019. The recommendations of the DDRB report will be considered within the context of the setting of the wider public sector pay remit.
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