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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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Consultation data reflects new ways of working and timely GP care being delivered, says RCGP

Responding to recent GP consultation data from NHS Digital, Professor Martin Marshall, Chair of the Royal College of GPs, said: "GPs and our teams are currently working incredibly hard, with a central role in the Covid vaccination programme – delivering around 75% of vaccine doses in England – as well as continuing the expanded flu vaccination programme and delivering the care our patients rely on. Given the workload and workforce pressures general practice is facing, it’s really good to see that when patients need care, they are being seen in such a timely manner.

"We’re unclear as to the extent work associated with the Covid vaccination programme is reflected in this data, as if GPs and practice team members are working in different settings, outside of their normal surgery, it may not be recorded in this dataset.
 
"When the Covid-19 pandemic hit the UK, GPs and our teams swiftly transformed the way we delivered many of our services in order to keep staff and patients safe, and maintain infection control in surgeries, so it isn’t surprising to see this reflected in consultation data from the start of this year, compared to pre-pandemic. When patients have needed face to face appointments, these have been facilitated in as safe a way as possible, and as this data shows, more than half of consultations in general practice are currently being conducted face to face.

"One thing we are finding is much lower prevalence of common winter illnesses, such as colds and flu, which often makes up a high number of GP consultations at this time of year. This is likely to be due to a combination of social distancing measures and lockdown restrictions, and a very high take up of the flu vaccine, particularly amongst over-65s, which is our best protection against influenza.
 
"General practice services are available, as they have been throughout the pandemic. If patients are concerned about their health, or have symptoms that could be signs of serious disease, such as cancer, we would encourage them to seek medical advice via 111 or their GP practice - and in an emergency they should call 999."