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Your Health, Your Future Consultation on possible changes to GP practices in Walsall - have your say, 26th July - 6th September

This consultation has now closed

GP services within the 59 GP practices are provided through contracts. GP services are provided on a General Medical Services (GMS) or Alternative Provider Medical Services (APMS) contact and APMS contracts are time limited. Several APMS contracts in Walsall are due to come to an end in the first few months of 2018. APMS contracts have to go out to procurement and this can mean that the contract holder can change, although not necessarily the staff within the practice. Walsall CCG is therefore looking at them and considering how future services could look.

The APMS contracts with the GP practices include a number of services which are no longer offered, or are paid for in a different way, therefore the CCG would like to look whether the needs of the area have changed.

This pdf document (466 KB)  describes the options for the future of these GP practices and asks for your views.

The GP practices affected are:

GP Practice Address Number of patients
Manor Medical Forrester Street, Walsall 3342
Wharf Family Practice Pleck Road, Walsall 3205
Sai Medical Practice Forrester Street, Walsall 3474
Blakenall Family Practice Blakenall, Walsall 5643
Harden Family Practice Harden Road, Bloxwich 3019
Coalpool Family Practice Harden Road, Bloxwich 4144
Kingfisher Practice Churchill Road, Walsall 4768
Keys Family Practice Field Street, Willenhall 4808
Collingwood Family Practice Collingwood Drive, Great Barr 5289

The groups of people who may be affected are:

  • The patients of these practices – approximately 37,700 people
  • The staff at these practices
  • The family and carers of patients at these practices
  • The staff, patients, families and carers at practices nearby
  • Local residents who may want to use these services in the future.

It is important that we have discussions and get feedback from these groups, we also welcome feedback and discussion with anyone who wishes to engage with us as part of this consultation. Therefore, we are offering patients in Walsall the chance to have their voice heard by completing our questionnaire.

The questionnaire seeks to gather the views of the public on possible changes and can be completed up until September 3rd. You can complete the questionnaire on walsallccg.nhs.uk.

We will also be holding four events where the public can engage with us and have their voices heard. The dates and venues for these events are as follows:

14th August, 6.30pm - 8.30pm Wharf Medical Practice, 145a Pleck Road, Walsall  
16th August, 10am - 12pm Blakenall Family Practice, 79 Thames Road, Walsall
22nd August, 6.30pm - 8.30pm  Keys Family Practice, Field Street, Willenhall
30th August, 2.30pm - 4.30pm  Kingfisher Practice, 157d Churchill Road, Walsall

After we make our decision, we will need to begin a procurement process. This process will apply to all the practices which need new contracts. A procurement is a legally required formal process with rules that provides a fair way of choosing a contract holder. 

Frequently Asked Questions

What is APMS and why are changes necessary?

APMS stands for Alternative Provider Medical Services contract and is a type of contract for GP services. Such contracts are time limited.

Several APMS contracts in Walsall are due to come to an end in the first three months of 2018. APMS contracts have to go out to procurement and this can mean that the contract holder can change, although not necessarily the staff within the practice. Walsall CCG is therefore looking at them and deciding how future services could look.

Why are different areas affected in different ways?

Several APMS contracts are due to come to an end in the first three months of 2018 and these are in different areas of Walsall. In some areas there are a number of APMS practices, with some already working together very closely therefore the CCG proposes that these practices could merge. In other areas the APMS practices are not close to each other therefore the CCG proposes that the practices could stay as they are or the practice could close and patients can register at another nearby practice.

The APMS contracts with the GP practices include a number of services which are no longer offered, or are paid for in a different way, therefore the CCG would like to look at whether the needs of the area have changed.

Will patients end up not having a GP if their practice closes?

If any practice closes then patients at that practice will be offered an alternative GP practice. Any new practice will be in close proximity to the existing practice or in some cases, in the same building.

Will evening and Saturday appointments be available at my practice in the future?

The proposal is to remove the evening and Saturday appointments from the new APMS contracts. Currently Collingwood Family Practice; Keys Family Practice; Coalpool Family Practice; Harden Family Practice; Wharf Family Practice have a requirement in their contract to provide two evening and Saturday morning appointments. These practices could still provide evening and weekend appointments under a nationally commissioned service (Extended Access Directed Enhanced Service). If the public feel that it is important to maintain evening and weekend appointments, then a clause can be inserted in the contracts to ensure the providers of the new contracts sign up to participate in the nationally commissioned service.

Walsall CCG will be working with our patients, practices and localities to design services that achieve 100% coverage of extended access (evening and weekend appointments) by no later than April 2019.  By April 2019 the extended access arrangements will need to provide routine appointments in the evenings and on Saturday and Sundays. The proposal is that patients throughout Walsall will have access to ‘hub’ GP practices where they can go if they want an evening or weekend appointment.

How will services be improved by these proposals?

Some of the proposals could create larger practices that could offer a greater choice of GPs, nurses and healthcare professionals for patients to see and offer more services within the practice.

Is this all about saving money?

These changes are about getting value for money and creating a sustainable approach to GP services in Walsall which meets the health needs of the population. The contracts for most of these APMS practices were set nearly 10 years ago and we need to review them to see if we are getting value for money and making sure that services are in line with patient needs.

Why is Collingwood Practice included in this Consultation?

Collingwood Family Practice is an APMS practice and the contract is due to expire in the first three months of 2018.  The contract for this practice is being reviewed along with all of the other expiring contracts.  In the APMS contract for Collingwood there is a clause to provide some evening and weekend appointments (extended access) and the CCG proposes to remove this requirement from the APMS Contract.  Collingwood patients are being asked to respond on how much this would affect them.  The proposal is that the Collingwood practice could provide extended access through a nationally funded scheme (Directed Enhanced Service for extended access).  Walsall CCG is working on a proposal to provide patients throughout Walsall with access to ‘hub’ GP practices where patients can go if they require an evening or weekend appointment, which would benefit all patients within Walsall rather than a select few practices.
 

Questionnaire

APMS Consultation questionnaire

Supporting documents

  pdf Your Health, Your Future Consultation document (466 KB)

  pdf Your Health, Your Future Consultation document - easy read version (5.59 MB)

  pdf APMS Procurement Pre-consultation (1.04 MB)  

  pdf APMS Public Consultation Plan (505 KB)

  pdf APMS Presentation (1008 KB)

  pdf APMS Patient Letter (615 KB)

  pdf APMS Frequently Asked Questions (152 KB)

  pdf Poster (179 KB)

  pdf Leaflet (169 KB)

  pdf EQIA APMS (270 KB)

  pdf Stakeholder Matrix (376 KB)

pdf APMS Governing Body Report - November 2017 (609 KB)

pdf Healthwatch Walsall APMS report (4.69 MB)

Area profiles

pdf Area 1 - Wharf Manor and Sai (556 KB)

pdf Area 2 - Harden, Coalpool and Blakenall (502 KB)

pdf Area 3 - Keys and Kingfisher (227 KB)