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23rd September 2020

GP Weekly Update (Last update: 22.09.20)

 Download our GP Weekly Update here. It highlights the latest Patient Communications Toolkit by NHS England, Updated Contract DES Specification and more! 

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Alternatively, read the summary here: 

In this Bulletin:

  • Patient Communications Toolkit
  • Updated Contract DES Specification
  • Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)
    • Supply
    • Technical Specifications
  • National Workforce Reporting System (NWRS)
  • Smartcard Renewal
  • Advice & Guidance (A&G) for GPs
  • Early Diagnosis of Cancer
  • Flu Vaccinations for Staff
  • NHS Low-Calorie Diet Pilot

A) Patient Communications Toolkit

It is a very difficult time for everyone and Patient frustrations appear to be on the rise, especially from those who believe that GP surgeries are closed and think they can’t get a face-to-face appointment if they need one. In addition to the resources we at QCS have provided, such as the GP MythBusters poster to clarify some misconceptions that Patients might have, NHS England has produced a communications toolkit to help you to communicate to Patients which services are available and how best to access them.

B) Updated Contract DES Specification

The Network Contract DES Specification and DES Guidance have been updated to cover the Investment and Impact Fund (IIF), the Additional Roles Reimbursement Scheme, and that the clinical lead role for care homes can be a non-GP. A full summary of changes is also available.

C) Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)

i) Supply

Following the improved supply of PPE since the beginning of the pandemic, the PHE guidance has now been withdrawn. We would advise Practices to monitor and report any potential future PPE supply shortages, especially as we approach the winter months and flu season.

ii) Technical Specifications

The Technical Specifications for PPE have recently been updated and Practices are advised to check that all PPE meets the standards expected by the Health and Safety Executive and the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency.

D) National Workforce Reporting System (NWRS)

Previously, Practices were expected to submit regular workforce information on the NWRS on a quarterly basis. In line with the GP Contract and Network DES, Practices must report this information, including locums or subcontractors, on a monthly basis from October 2020.

E) Smartcard Renewal

Any prescriber who had their smartcard issued or renewed between 9pm on 2 September and 8.30pm on 4 September 2020 must renew it before issuing any further EPS prescriptions; and certainly by 4 October 2020, or it will expire.

F) Advice & Guidance (A&G) for GPs

A&G services improve the interface between primary and secondary care and a guide is available which explains how A&G can support the safe and effective delivery of care alongside COVID-19 activity, where general practice teams can learn more about making an A&G request and how general practice can support system partners in implementing A&G services in their area.

G) Early Diagnosis of Cancer

One of the 2020-21 (QOF) quality improvement (QI) indicators focuses on the early diagnosis of cancer, which is also highlighted in the PCN specification, and new SNOMED codes for safety netting will be introduced on 1 October 2020. This briefing provides an overview, plus some practical advice and top tips.

H) Flu Vaccinations for Staff

Just a reminder that employers must offer all their staff (including locums) a flu vaccination as soon as possible.

I) NHS Low Calorie Diet Pilot

If your Patients live in one of the following areas, they will be able to access the new NHS soup and shake weight-loss plan to help tackle type 2 diabetes:

  • North East and Yorkshire: South Yorkshire & Bassetlaw ICS, and Humber Coast & Vale STP
  • North West: Greater Manchester Health & Social Care Partnership
  • South East: Frimley Health and Care STP
  • South West: Gloucestershire STP
  • Midlands (West and East): Derbyshire STP, and Birmingham and Solihull STP
  • East of England: Bedfordshire, Luton, and Milton Keynes (BLMK) ICS
  • London: North East London, and North Central London

More information is available on the NHS England website.

*All information is correct at the time of publishing. Use of this material is subject to your acceptance of our terms and conditions.

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