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This online Learning Network provides members with information and support around Quality Improvement (QI), an evidence-based approach that helps primary care free up time to deliver and evaluate initiatives, and embed new approaches more effectively and efficiently into practice.

QI helps us to make the most of our systems, organisations, talents and expertise to deliver better outcomes for patients.

Members have access to useful resources and case studies as well as opportunities to share learning from their experiences and make useful links with others interested in QI.

Whether you have been undertaking QI work for a while or just want to find out more, this network can support you in your journey and connect you to colleagues across the country who are working in innovative ways.

Membership is open to people working in GP practices and other organisations that support them. Register now to become a member of the Learning Network.

This network has been developed as part of the Royal College of General Practice’s Quality Improvement programme, led by two Clinical Lead’s Dr Mike Holmes and Dr Simon Stockill. If you have any questions about the programme please get in touch with the team at QI.Ready@rcgp.org.uk.

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Vital that patients who need the skills of a GP can access them - but home visits do take GPs out of surgery where they could be seeing more patients, says RCGP

The RCGP has responded to Local Medical Committee proposals on the future of home visits.

Professor Helen Stokes-Lampard, Chair of the Royal College of GPs, said:

"GPs and our teams are under enormous pressure and are working flat out to try and keep pace with rising patient demand.

"We have a severe shortage of GPs and many practices are having to make very difficult decisions about where best to allocate their time and resources in order to deliver the maximum benefit for their patients.

"Home visits can be very time consuming and take the GP away from the surgery when they could be seeing other patients, and where there are far better facilities to properly assess patients.

"But for some of our more complex and vulnerable patients, home visits are an invaluable, and often the only, means of seeing their GP.

"We are very supportive of proposals to train other members of the GP team such as physician associates and advanced paramedics to carry out home visits as appropriate, but they are not a substitute for GPs and it is vital that patients who need the skills of a GP are able to access them.

"Ultimately, this proposal will be for the BMA, as the doctors' union, to decide, but it would need a lot of consideration and any changes would need to be widely and sensitively communicated to patients.

"Meanwhile, we would urge our patients requesting a home visit to consider very carefully whether they really need one, so that valuable GP time is spent most wisely on those patients who need it most."

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