North Dorset CCG Locality is pleased to advise patients that, following the new GP contract requirement, three Primary Care Networks have been agreed within North Dorset. This is essentially business as usual, as practices are already working closely with local partners focused around the three community hubs.

The three Networks consist of:

  • The Sherborne Area Network: Yetminster Health Centre, the Apples Medical Centre and the Grove Medical Centre (following the merger of Bute House and Newland surgeries) working with community and voluntary sector teams based at the Yeatman Hospital;
  • The Vale Network: Blackmore Vale Partnership and Gillingham Medical Practice working with community and voluntary teams based at Westminster Memorial Hospital;
  • The Blandford Network: Eagle House and Whitecliff Group Practice will merge on 01 October to become The Blandford Group Practice.  The merged Practice will work with the community and voluntary teams who cover Blandford and the surrounding villages.

As a locality of practices and community teams, we have historically good working relationships. Network development helps us build on this and includes continued work as follows:

  • The Carers Accreditation scheme – to ensure carers can access appropriate support in a sometimes difficult and challenging role.
  • Collaborative Practice – a national programme of collaborative work to identify health champions and empower members of our community to work with us to support our patient population.
  • Health walks and exercise referral schemes to support patients to get active and improve physical and mental wellbeing.
  • Population health management – using data to focus resources and offer more proactive models of care.
  • Health and Well-being Board – working with a varied number of partners including Family Partnership Zones, Police and Fire, education, town councils, local authorities, Live Well Dorset and Public Health Dorset and the voluntary sector to name a few! Initiatives include promoting exercise for all ages including school age and organising buggy walks.
  • Integrated ways of working to avoid duplication and inequalities in help and care.

These are exciting times and we welcome positive patient involvement – please contact your local practice or Patient Participation Group if you would like further information and to be involved in Network development in your local area.

Dr Simone Yule

North Dorset Locality Lead GP.