Transforming General Practice


There are 25 GP practices in Bath and North East Somerset.

There is a workforce crisis in primary care as many GPs are retiring early and recruiting newly qualified doctors into general practice is getting harder.

GP practices are under pressure to deliver a wider range of services, seven days a week. They will have to work together more closely to do this.

The results of the 2016 GP Patient Survey show that patients in Bath and North East Somerset have overwhelmingly good experiences when they go to see their GP. Nowhere else in the country scored higher than B&NES for overall patient experience.

However, the demands on GPs are increasing, recruiting new GPs is becoming a challenge and the way primary care is delivered in B&NES is becoming difficult to maintain.

The CCG is working with all 25 practices in B&NES to develop a strategy for primary care which will encourage practices to work more closely together to provide a wider range of services to their local communities, seven days a week.  Our emerging local General Practice Forward View Plan will include updates on new models of care, workforce, workload, infrastructure and improving access to GP services.  This is in line with planning guidance set by NHS England that requires the CCG to provide assurances over our plans for the sustainability of general practice.

You can read more about the NHS England General Practice Forward View here. The CCG is working with the local NHS England General Practice Forward View Transformation Team alongside our GP practices to develop its plan, to be overseen by the Primary Care Commissioning Committee.

In summer 2018, we finalised our Primary Care Strategy for 2018-2020 which you can download here. We also have a helpful ‘one-pager‘ that condenses the full strategy into its main components and how we plan to address them:

  1. Access to care – eg, Improving Access
  2. Models of care
  3. Workforce sustainability
  4. Workload
  5. Estates and infrastructure

How can we improve access to primary care? Patient and public feedback

Thank you to everyone who took part in our consultation in June/early July 2017 to explore people’s views on the different ways you can book an appointment with your GP e.g. via telephone, online or by popping in to your local practice and speaking to the receptionist.

We received over 400 responses and have summarised the results in the ‘Booking GP appointments survey’ report here.

We have also consulted with our Your Health, Your Voice patient group members and primary care professionals to find out how they think access to primary care could be improved in B&NES. Read our ‘Improving access to primary care – engagement summary’ here to find out what they said.

We will be engaging further with a range of groups to find out how we can improve access to primary care for patients. If you have any questions, or would like to share your views, please get in touch at


The issues that general practice is facing in B&NES are the same, if not worse, across the rest of the country.

The following reports have been written to identify the cause of the problems and to decide what should be done about it:

NHS England GP Forward View

BMAFocus on GP Forward View

The King’s FundUnderstanding pressures in general practice