The NHS is seeking innovative ways to deal with increasing demands on GP surgeries.
NHS England and the academic health science networks are to invest in innovative business projects that help family doctors cope with increasing demands placed on their practices.
The demand for general practice is at its highest ever level.The number of face-to-face consultations increased by 13% between 2010 and 2015 at the same time as the number of GPs was declining.
GPs are expected to face increasing demands on their practices as more and more elements of care are pushed out of hospitals and into general practice.
The NHS is seeking to fund projects under SBRI (Small Business Research Initiative) in three areas:
- workload and demand management: solutions that better forecast the demands that will be placed on surgeries and help to release GP time
- diagnostics and earlier triage: technology that allows rapid diagnostic testing to take place within general practices rather than in acute care
- self-care: products that help the patient to look after themselves in partnership with their GP