There appears to be a feeding frenzy over legal support to PCNs of industrial proportions taking a simple and straightforward concept to new heights of unnecessary complexity.
PCNs should not be complicated in either their functions or their structures. Their establishment does not require complex legal agreements or governance arrangements to carry out their intended functions in accordance with their purpose, as defined by GPC and the subsequent PCN DES etc. Not just my view, but actually the view of the GPC Exec when they presented the deal in January.
It is our view that rather than spending scarce time and resource on elaborate structures and governance, the attention of those in PCNs should be focussed on the following outcomes for practices and patients in accordance with the spirit of the BMA and NHSE agreement:
securing the right workforce balance across the local neighbourhood to support practices deliver good quality core primary medical services, with
good coordinated wider care for their patients within the local health and care system, and
providing commissioners in STPs/ICSs strong bottom-up direction on how the whole system can support these outcomes.
Londonwide LMCs is further actively supporting PCNs and practices in achieving these outcomes, and meeting the requirements agreed between the BMA and NHSE. We have commissioned a set of Model Schedules contextualised for the specific circumstances that working in the Capital presents, for use by PCNs within the Londonwide LMCs’ area. Neither Londonwide LMCs nor LMC Law are charging our PCNs or practices for this service. These documents are intended to help PCN Clinical Directors, and are being shared with the recently engaged PCN Clinical Directors, LMC members, and practitioners for use within the Londonwide LMCs’ area only.