One Gloucestershire health and care partners acknowledge the fantastic work of GP practice staff despite unprecedented levels of patient need.

Local practices remain dedicated to patient care despite many challenges, including a record increase in contacts and staffing shortages across practice teams.

Against that backdrop, local GP practices and Primary Care Networks are doing their level best to improve access, patient experience and outcomes.

Capitalising on their strong track record in embracing new ways of working and developing teams, practices are striving to offer the right kind of care and appointments, based on the nature of the patient’s symptoms, condition and needs.

Many practices have been introducing new systems to make it easier for patients to make appointments with the most appropriate member of the team. Clinical pharmacists, physiotherapists, mental health practitioners (see film), paramedics and other professionals working within or alongside practice teams, are also helping to meet the individual needs of patients.

NHS Gloucestershire is continuing to provide support, particularly around areas such as recruitment, appointments and booking systems.

However, the pressures are intense and additional funding and further measures to expand the existing workforce will be critical to the future of primary care.