A group of sixteen practices in the southeast have banded together to form a federation to ease pressure on their resources.
The GP federation for Windsor, Ascot and Maidenhead (F-WAM), will see a group of surgeries from across the borough to share their expertise.
The federation was officially formed on 26 April after a year’s worth of preparation. The group will now have 140,000 registered patients on their list.
Graham Collins, practice manager from Claremont Surgery in Maidenhead, said that patients will continue to be treated by the same staff in their usual practices and should not be immediately affected by the change.
Behind the scenes, however, the federation plans to improve access to services by working together more closely to make ‘back-room services’ such as pay roll more efficient.
In the first year the federation hopes to open new community services such as physiotherapy and deep vein thrombosis clinics.
The group also plans to introduce clinical pharmacists to their practice workforce.
A GP from Datchet Health Centre outside of Windsor, Dr Mick Watts, said the federation should ‘relieve pressure on all the surgeries and allow consistent services to be provided’.
Thus far the federation has been funded by the individual practices but Dr Watts said that he hopes that Windsor and Maidenhead Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), who support the new organisation, will assist with additional resources to support some projects to ensure its success.
‘In other areas CCG’s have match-funded the start-up costs contributed by GPs,’ he said.
Windsor area: Clarence Medical Centre, Datchet Health Centre, Lee House, Sheet Street, Radnor House and Ascot Medical Centre, Runnymede Medical Centre and Newton Court, South Meadow and Dedworth Medical Centre.
Maidenhead area: Cedars, Claremont and Holyport, Cookham Medical Centre, Cordwallis Road, Linden Medical Centre, Redwood House, Rosemead, Ross Road Medical Centre, Woodlands Park.