Primary Care Networks (PCNs) in Abingdon

Primary Care Networks
Healthy Abingdon invited people interested in our local health services to a presentation and discussion on Primary Care Networks (PCNs) in Abingdon.

Primary Care Networks were set up in July 2019, after six months of planning. They group GP practises into larger units covering between 30 – 50,000 people. Abingdon is split into two PCNs. One covers The Abingdon Surgery and Malthouse Surgery, in the town centre, with 33,657 people. The other covers Marcham Road Health Centre and Long Furlong Health Centres in Abingdon, Berinsfield Health Centre and Clifton Hampden Surgery with 30,043 people.

PCNs will allow closer coordination between GP practises to allow things like better extended hours cover. They will also get more funding for extra specialist services in the area. One such service that has already been set up is Social Prescribing. More services with funding will follow.

Social Prescribing is something GPs have always done. It is referring people to activities in the community, possibly college courses, possibly for help from voluntary groups (The Abingdon Bridge – counselling, and Health Walks Abingdon are examples). Treatment from the NHS is not the only answer.

Having a specialist Social Prescriber allows GPs to do this more effectively. Emma and Emma, the two ladies who job share the role, told us something of what they did and how they help people. There followed an interesting round table discussion about what people in Abingdon would like out of social prescribing.

About forty people attended the meeting at the Conduit Centre, at Trinity Church, in Abingdon.

6 thoughts on “Primary Care Networks (PCNs) in Abingdon

  1. Janet

    They joke if they think that you get better care. Because of the large numbers of patients registered at the Malthouse one can only get to see one’s own G P in around 3 to 4 weeks waiting. The new housing developement planned at Radley will not have a G P surgery. The same with the 1700 new houses planned for North Abingdon. Apparently there willl only be an outreach service from an exitsting G P surgery.

  2. hester

    Janet – The plans for the North Abingdon development (900 houses East of Tilsley Park and c. 260 West of it) do include a surgery – and a primary school.

  3. Su

    I’m sure we all hope that the school and surgery are built and staffed at the same time that the new houses are occupied.

  4. Janet

    I saw the plan and proposal for the new housing in Radley and it stated that a G P surgery was not going to be built for this development. Also for the 1700 houses in North Abingdon I believe that only an outreach G P facility was going to be built supplied by an existing surgery in Abingdon. Please let me know the details of, as you say, a new surgery proposed to be built for the new development in North Abingdon.

  5. Hester

    Janet – I am not sure where your figure of 1700 houses in North Abingdon comes from: the Local Plan provides for around 950 + 200 and those are the sort of numbers proposed in the current planning applications.
    The current planning application for the area between Tilsley Park and the Oxford Road provides for 425 houses plus a primary school and a “local centre” which will be available for use for a health centre, shop(s) and other community facilities.
    The developer contributions in respect of the new housing will include a substantial contribution to the Oxfordshire Clinical Commissioning Group of the NHS and they plan to address the additional requirements by setting up “a branch practice of the Long Furlong Practice” in the local centre.


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