The social enterprise, which provides local NHS community services, has teamed up with the GP provider organisation Coastal Health to fund a year long diabetes focused programme. With the help of a grant from Great Yarmouth and Waveney Clinical Commissioning Group, they have employed Dr Rupert Talboys, a recently qualified GP, at East Norfolk Medical Practice in Great Yarmouth to lead this project.
Dr Talboys qualified as a doctor from the University of East Anglia in 2011, and after a period of training in orthopaedics switched to General Practice. His work will follow the Norfolk and Waveney Sustainability Transformation Plan which aims to provide better integrated care in the area.
He said: “I’m excited to be undertaking this Fellowship because I’m interested in developing leadership skills and learning about how health systems work. The project aims to improve lifestyle through education and health coaching, simplifying the health advice delivered by professionals and focusing on prevention.”
ECCH was awarded the contract to run community diabetic services from April this year for at least the next five years. The number of people diagnosed with diabetes in the UK has more than doubled in the last twenty years and, in Great Yarmouth and Waveney, is already higher than average for England. Diabetes specialist nurses work closely with GPs providing clinics in their surgeries.
‘One stop shops’ are also being rolled out in each of the Primary Care Networks in Gorleston, Great Yarmouth, Lowestoft and Waveney so that patients can be seen by a number of professionals in one visit. It means they can have access to retinal screening, blood tests, urine tests, lifestyle and stop smoking advice, as well as an essential foot check.
ECCH’s Executive Director of Quality, Dr Noreen Cushen-Brewster said: “It is very exciting for us to be able to offer this joint fellowship with Coastal Health. It’s the first time we have run such a programme and it comes at an important time when we are already working closely with local GP practices to develop Primary Care Networks and provide more joined up care between our organisations for the benefit of patients. It is also vital because everyone knows diabetes in on the increase and we want to be able to develop our new Diabetes Service and ensure we provide the best possible care and advice to those who are living with the condition.”
Amanda Sear of Coastal Health said: “Partnership working with ECCH and the CCG, strengthened under the new community contract, is something we really value. We are proud to be part of an innovative way of working to support the development of diabetic care which is accessible to all. It is part of our overall aim to break down historic barriers between primary and community care and improve outcomes for our local population.”
Emma Wakelin, Head of Workforce Transformation for Norfolk and Waveney Health and Care Partnership said “We’re really pleased that ECCH and Coastal Health are supporting Dr Talboys with a Fellowship. This shows great foresight and a commitment to joined up working across the health system which will benefit both patients and GPs. Dr Talboys is the fourth GP Fellow to be recruited in this new way of working and plans are in place to recruit another seven GPs to the programme working in a range of settings across Norfolk and Waveney.”