General Practice Nurses (GPNs) are a vital part of any local health economy. They work with their GP practices and local networks, performing a broad range of essential services for patients and providing invaluable support to practices and to wider health teams.
A lot of work has been taking place to boost support for the GPN sector across the Frimley Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) area to ensure that the local system can recruit and retain the best people.
The developments are all aimed at strengthening the local GPN community, through increased structured training opportunities, as well as creating new ways of sharing information between nurses to build a better network and stronger sense of community.
Special named lead nursing posts have been created in each of Frimley CCG’s five ‘Places’:
- Bracknell Forest
- North East Hampshire and Farnham
- Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead
- Surrey Heath
These new Place leads support local colleagues in, working with the overall nursing lead, Frimley CCG and the Frimley Training Hub to ensure access for nurses to education opportunities, leadership and guidance and to make sure their voice is valued and their needs are met.
Over the past six months the improvements have included:
- helping to shape the GPN training offered by the Frimley Training Hub
- increasing the number of practices taking student nurses/training nursing associates
- providing protected learning time for GPNs
- launching a GPN Facebook page to share opportunities and provide clinical support
- creating a Frimley CCG monthly nursing newsletter to share the latest national and local information
- rolling out virtual group consultation training to all practices
- developing a nursing locum bank
- preparing the first GPN conference for the area – which will see the launch of a revalidation and appraisal tool which all GPNs will have funded access to
- preparing to launch clinical supervision, with the Place-based leads championing this work
Rachel Jarrett-Kerr, Clinical Nursing Lead for Frimley CCG, said: “These changes have raised the profile of General Practice Nursing and helped to highlight the opportunities we have and to showcase the range of skills and expertise our staff put into practice every day.
“They show how innovative and forward-thinking our system is and they add to the reasons why we think this is a great place to work.”