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19th July 2016 (


Blog: The success of seven-day service using a tri-federation model


Sohail Munshi, GP and chair of the Manchester Primary Care Partnership (MPCP) discusses the organisations approach to seven-day service and how it's tri-federation model, backed by 91 independent GPs in the city, has received national praise for delivering care to over 600,000 patients.   


Q. What were the initial challenges you had in introducing GP federations/seven-day services across Manchester?


A. Predating seven-day service we had to consider the context of overstretched, under-resourced general practice in a climate of uncertainty relating to unprecedented workforce and recruitment challenges. We felt that effective change had to focus on delivering care at scale with better collaboration between practices, not only to meet the demands of service provision but also to build resilience and safeguard general practice in the wider environment.


From this approach we developed three GP federations in Manchester- one in each CCG area. We realised that to be credible and effective we needed to speak for the majority if not all of the practices. This was a huge leadership ask and I'm proud of the achievements of the three federations in getting 100% sign up of the 91 practices that make up the city of Manchester. Change at scale requires leaders with passion, drive and endurance to engage with such a large GP community.


The 100% sign up meant we could then come together as three federations to represent the whole city as one tri-federation (MPCP), whilst allowing each federation the freedom to achieve a high level of practice engagement. This also enabled us to win the citywide seven-day service PMCF wave two bid. We have used this to improve patient access and improve GP capacity, but also to demonstrate to commissioners and other providers how at scale services can work effectively.

Q. Has there been a been a better integration between primary and secondary care providers since seven-day services have become more common?


A. Yes. There are obvious advantages to CCGs in dealing with one body and holding them to account. By aligning strategies and vision wherever possible, we have demonstrated how partnership working has benefitted both sides and as result improved patient care as well as consistency of care across the city. We see seven-day service as essential to new delivery models and have based the GP hubs on a 30,000 - 50,000 population limit across the city - in anticipation of future integration with them. Other providers in the city have been very supportive. We have ministerial visits and have received positive national feedback also as a result of our success in implementing such a large scheme covering 600,000 plus patients.

Q. How has the service helped safe patient care?


A. By using data sharing across the practices it means patients cared for during evenings and weekends see a GP in a local hub who has full read/write access to the patients GP record. This has benefits in terms of patient safety, prescribing, governance and of course quality of patient care and experience.

Q. What have practice managers and GP partners generally made of the change to seven-day services?


A. It's fair to say there are challenges in educating practices and staff in using the new access models initially and communicating with front line receptionists, not just GPs/PMs. The process has required considerable time and effort, but as the service has now become more established it's generally very popular with practices now.

Q. Is the Manchester model of all GP practices uniting under a single body (MPCP), one that can be replicated elsewhere in England/UK?


A. Yes - with the proviso of a need for clear leadership/vision/engagement. LMC support has been also been integral to producing a cohesive and united front in my opinion.




11th March 2016


Minister of State for General Practice visits Manchester’s innovative seven day GP service


A government health minister visited Manchester today (Friday 11 March 2016) to see the city’s innovative seven

day GP service in action.


The Rt Hon Alistair Burt MP, Minister of State for General Practice, visited a GP hub at the University Hospital of

South Manchester in Wythenshawe. The GP hub aims to reduce pressure on A&E by providing primary care

services in a hospital setting.


Based next door to the hospital’s busy A& E department, it is one of 14 GP hubs* that provide patients with access

to a GP at evenings and on weekends, seven days a week.


Mr Burt was taken on a tour of the hospital hub where he met with primary care reception staff and the on-duty GP to see the service working first hand.


He learned how the hub is enabling the emergency department to book appointments with the onsite GP for patients who attend A&E with minor issues that can be better dealt with by primary care.


Mr Burt, Minister for General Practice, said: “It is fantastic to see the excellent work being done by GPs in Manchester. Patients want a safer, seven day NHS and that means evening and weekend appointments as well as video and telephone consultations. The GPs I met here are already leading the way in this and by 2020 everyone across the country will be able to benefit from these improved services.”


The Minister began his day with a visit to Five Oaks Family Practice in Beswick to meet Dr Sohail Munshi, local GP and Chair of The Manchester Primary Care Partnership, a unique tri-federation that is delivering the seven day GP service on behalf of Manchester’s three clinical commissioning groups.

Mr Burt found out more about the £5.4m scheme, which is funded by the Prime Minister’s GP Access Fund. Serving some 600,000 patients, it is the biggest seven day GP access scheme currently underway in the country.


Dr Munshi said: “It was an honour to welcome the Minister to Manchester and demonstrate to him how our pioneering seven day service is benefitting patients across the city. Feedback about the service from patients and staff has been very positive and it was great to be able to share some of our vision, successes and also challenges with the Minister. We hope to build on this work to ensure the city of Manchester is a place where healthcare is accessible, responsive and of the highest quality.”


A spokesperson for Manchester's Clinical Commissioning Groups, said: "The seven-day GP access is a vital part of a broader vision for the next five years - to provide a wider range of services in local areas, so that more people are cared for outside of hospital and closer to where they live. This development will see more integration between health and social teams in the community, as we work towards creating a healthier Manchester."


Manchester’s seven day scheme forms part of the national drive to improve access to general practice. By 2020, the government expects every patient in the country to be able to use GP services seven days a week.





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Media contact


Alison Whelan, Communications and Engagement Lead
Greater Manchester Shared Services (part of the North West Commissioning Support Unit)
Tel: 07810 816032


Editor’s notes


About the seven day GP access service


The seven day service is available to any patient registered with a Manchester GP. Appointments must be booked in advance and patients can book appointments by contacting their own local GP surgery. Manchester’s 91 GP practices are working together to staff the new service with clinicians able to access patients’ medical records.


*The seven day service is operating from 14 locations in Manchester:

- Cheetham Hill Medical Centre, Cheetham Hill
- Conran Medical Centre, Harpurhey
- Hazeldene Medical Centre, Moston
- New Islington Medical Centre, Ancoats
- Chorlton Family Practice, Chorlton
- Dickenson Road Medical Centre, Longsight
- The Arch Medical Practice, Hulme
- West Point Medical Centre, Levenshulme
- Barlow Medical Centre, Didsbury
- Ladybarn Group Practice, Withington
- Northenden Group Practice, Northenden
- North Manchester General Hospital
- Manchester Royal Infirmary
- University Hospital of South Manchester.

For more information visit


About The Manchester Primary Care Partnership


The Manchester Primary Care Partnership Ltd (MPCP) was established in February 2015, when the city’s three GP federations joined together to form a unique tri-federation.


The tri-federation comprises: Northern Health GPPO Ltd (North Manchester CCG area); Primary Care Manchester Ltd (Central Manchester CCG area); and South Manchester GP Federation Ltd (South Manchester CCG area).


MPCP has achieved the backing of all 91 independent local GP practices across its three catchment areas and represents a patient population of almost 600,000.


It is a GP shareholder organisation with a board of directors made up of local practicing GPs and experienced practice managers.


For more information visit



24th February 2016




A pioneering course has been launched in Manchester to equip GPs with business and management skills as part of the remodelled NHS.

Ten GPs have embarked on a 12-month board development programme which will lead to a certificate in strategic leadership and management from the Chartered Management Institute.

They are all members of the board of the Manchester Primary Care Partnership, a federation representing 91 practices across the city serving 600,000 patients, one of the first and largest of its kind in the country.

The entire board, comprising the 10 clinicians and nine primary healthcare managers, is taking the course run by training provider Salford Professional Development which is designed to ensure MPCP follows financial, governance and operational best practice.

The programme comprises monthly sessions covering topics such as leadership, executive coaching, financial skills, performance management, understanding business law, leading organisational change and quality management.

MPCP was formed last year as an alliance of the three general practice provider organisations in Manchester, with financial backing from the Prime Minister’s GP Access Fund.

MPCP aims to improve seven-day access to GPs and other primary care services.

Initiatives undertaken so far include 15 locations where extended access to GPs is available outside of normal surgery hours.

MPCP has also developed an app which provides the public with an array of health-related material, including an A-Z of self-help advice, a directory of local health and care organisations such as GP and dental surgeries, chemists and hospitals, and details of the extended access service with directions.

Dr Colin Tate, practice director at The Range, one of 31 surgeries in the central Manchester GPPO, is on MPCP’s board.

He said: “MPCP provides a significant opportunity to support general practice and influence the shape, design and delivery of future primary and community-based healthcare services in the city to ensure they meet the needs of all patients.

“There is a lot of focus on Manchester with the whole DevoManc initiative, and MPCP can influence positive change across the city while also being an example for other parts of the country to follow.

“The government is encouraging the development of clinically-led federations, which means the boards require a high percentage of clinicians to be on them.

“This development programme is ground-breaking in terms of what it offers clinicians.

“GPs are well-educated people with many transferable skills in leadership, but not so many in management. By definition, they are medically-trained but tend not to be experienced in running an organisation of scale.

“The MPCP directors have responsibility for its governance and finance and, through this programme, they will be in post on merit and not simply by choice or circumstance.

“The course is designed to give them a greater understanding of how organisations are structured, their governance and the general management skills required of an organisational leader.

“This approach will assist their personal development and that of the board, through which MPCP will benefit greatly, enabling it to be an effective force for the improvement of healthcare provision across Manchester.”

MPCP chairman Dr Sohail Munshi, who is a partner at the Five Oaks Family Practice and chairman of the GPPO which covers north Manchester, said: “We are breaking new ground in terms of innovative and patient-centred delivery models for primary care.

“It’s our aspiration to consolidate the personal and professional attributes of both clinical and non-clinical directors as individuals and leaders in the new NHS.

“We very much see the course as equipping us with some of the managerial skills required to navigate, lead and inspire others in this field.

“The board recognises the importance of building our knowledge, skills and attributes to help us achieve our goals and provide the organisation with resilience and credibility.”


Marc Davis, chief executive of Salford Professional Development, said: “We are delighted to be involved in this pioneering training programme, which we anticipate will bring major benefits to GPs and the general public in Manchester as well as providing a model for other similar initiatives across the country.”


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Salford Professional Development was established in 2012 and runs conferences and events, CPD courses and bespoke and in-house training for the private, public and not-for-profit sectors. Its headquarters in Adelphi House at the University of Salford have more than 15 training and conference rooms across three storeys.

It is a fast-growing subsidiary of the University of Salford and delivers events and training across the UK and internationally.

Visit for more information.

For more information on this story, contact SPD’s head of marketing and communications Elka Lamb on 0161 295 0114 or

The media contact for Salford Professional Development is Kevin Feddy. Contact him via, 0161 300 8543 or 07770 543112.