Primary Care Cheshire went on a study tour to the Bromley-by-Bow centre which is an organisation owned by a Charity, with a GP Practice on site. The Centre has various buildings, the GP Practice being just one of these. The building has a great deal of services which are owned by the Bromley by Bow Social Enterprise Charity, with the GP Practice running as a PMS model in one of the centre’s buildings.
Brian, Chief Operating Officer at Primary Care Cheshire, reported that the day was very insightful. Brian explained that they have a community led approach to healthcare and as a cluster of three practices accumulating 27,000 patients they have combined forces to create a charity as well as continuing their primary care work. As part of their charity work they have set up debt management services, housing benefit services and healthcare training and learning facilities from third sector and voluntary organisations. The charity also support’s small business enterprises some of which have helped within the health centre.
Social prescribing is very much at the forefront of healthcare in the area and they appear to have a relatively seamless referral process from primary care.
During the afternoon Brian took part in a workshop discussing the Bromley-by-Bow cluster model as well as some of the challenges we face in West Cheshire with clustering and federative work. There are some similarities with our area; Tower Hamlets CCG has 8 clusters with 260,000 population and 36 practices and West Cheshire CCG has 9 clusters covering 34 practices and 250,000 population.
Tower Hamlets also have an over-arching GP Federation which was set up after the 8 clusters with a board which is made up of representatives from each cluster. This federation tenders for larger contracts on behalf of all practices again this is similar to Primary Care Cheshire GP federation.