A delegation from the National Association of General Practitioners (NAGP) have said that a meeting with the Minister for Health, Simon Harris, was very constructive. The meeting, held in Leinster House, today (9th June) was attended by an NAGP delegation including Dr. Andrew Jordan, Chairman; Dr. Emmet Kerin, President, Dr. Mary Flynn, Honorary Secretary; Mr. Chris Goodey, CEO; and Mr. Tim Smyth, Head of Legal and Public Affairs.
The meeting was the first in the process of engagement with the NAGP which Minister Harris indicated would be ongoing. At the outset, the Minister acknowledged the Government has a fractured relationship with General Practice and he emphasised that he wished to rebuild this relationship.
Dr. Emmet Kerin, speaking following the meeting, said, “I welcome the Minister’s stated commitment to rebuilding relations with GPs and the commitment to a new GP contract. An engaging and productive discussion took place with Minister Harris on a wide range of issues”.
Topics discussed ranged from the need for a new GP contract; how to retain GPs; integration of Primary and Secondary Care; and the NAGP’s role in promoting innovation.
The NAGP delegation presented a detailed submission which outlined the organisations vision for the future of GP-led Primary Care. The NAGP presented a model for formalising the integration between Primary and Secondary Care including designated care pathways, the establishment of acute care pathways and innovation in IT platforms being developed by the NAGP.
At the meeting, Dr. Mary Flynn emphasised the need for GPs to have greater access to diagnostics.
The NAGP outlined its role in innovation in General Practice giving the Minister an overview of their GP Online video health and practice management system which will be launched later this year.
The NAGP, which represents 1600 GPs, said that consultation and negotiation with doctors’ representatives is crucial. The NAGP look forward to working closely with the Government to ensure a GP-led primary care system that delivers for the patient.