NO REPRO FEE 20/09/2017 Over Dependence on Hospital Care Strangling Health System: At the launch today of the second Primary Care Partnership consensus document, “Defining Primary Care in the 21st Century”, the partnership of primary care providers called on the Government to heed their calls for genuine reform. Pictured are (LtoR) Mr Chris Goodey, Chair, Primary Care Partnership, Ireland, Mr Richie Walsh, Secretary, Athletic Rehabilitation Therapy Ireland (ARTI), Ms Marijke Morris, Chair of Independent Speech-Language Therapists in Ireland (ISLTI), Dr Andrew Jordan, Chair of the National Association of General Practitioners (NAGP), Mr Ruaidhri O'Connor, CEO of the Irish Society of Chartered Physiotherapists (ISCP). Photo: Sasko Lazarov/Photocall Ireland

*Healthcare professionals have spoken – will the Government now listen and take action?

*Upcoming budget must support a decisive shift to GP-led Primary Care

*Immediate action needed to save health service

 At the launch today of the second Primary Care Partnership consensus document, “Defining Primary Care in the 21st Century”, the partnership of primary care providers called on the Government to heed their calls for genuine reform. The National Association of General Practitioners (NAGP) are proud members of the Primary Care Partnership.

Speaking at the launch, Chairman of the Primary Care Partnership, Mr Chris Goodey, CEO of the NAGP, said, “Primary care health professionals have spoken – will the Government start listening and take action? Last year, we launched the first ever consensus document on healthcare reform. This year, the Oireachtas Committee published their Slaintecare report. We are all saying the same thing – that we need to make a decisive shift to GP-led Primary Care”.

The Primary Care Partnership hosted a conference in Croke Park, Dublin on the 31st March and 1st April 2017 attracting more than 350 health and social care professionals. The two-day conference provided an open forum for ideas and synergies. In six workshops, these ideas were refined into action plans which formed the basis for this consensus document.

Mr Goodey said, “Our over dependence and corresponding investment in expensive hospital care is strangling meaningful reform of the health system. We know that for every €1 spent in Primary Care saves €5 in the rest of the health system. The Government must implement budgetary changes and move funding from secondary into primary care in the best interests of patients”.

The Primary Care Partnership brought together key leaders in areas such as General Practice, nursing, medical training and education, rehabilitation services, nutrition and patient care and pharmaceuticals to produce a series of potential solutions which should be put in place in order to tackle Ireland’s health problems.

The consensus document, which outlines solutions to Ireland’s numerous health challenges, was launched today by the Primary Care Partnership at a function in Dublin, attended by Oireachtas members, Department of Health and HSE officials and healthcare professionals.

Mr Goodey concluded, “I am calling on all stakeholders to work together to confront the challenges facing the Irish health system. We have an opportunity to build the healthcare system we all want. The Government must show leadership in making the difficult decisions that have a lasting and positive impact on patients and healthcare professionals”.

Read the document in full here.