Primary health care provides the first point of contact in
the healthcare system. In the NHS, the main source of primary health care is
Social Care and Sport Committee's inquiry focused on the role of clusters
(groups of GPs working with other health and care professionals to plan and
provide services locally) as a means of transforming primary care. There
are 64 cluster networks across Wales, serving populations of between 30 and 50
thousand patients. Clusters are determined by individual local health boards in
Terms of reference:
The Committee’s inquiry aimed to
provide a better understanding of how the cluster model is working in Wales and
- How GP
cluster networks in Wales can assist in reducing demand on GPs and the
extent to which clusters can provide a more accessible route to care
(including mental health support in primary care).
emerging multi-disciplinary team (how health and care professionals fit
into the new cluster model and how their contribution can be measured).
current and future workforce challenges.
funding allocated directly to clusters to enable GP practices to try out
new ways of working; how monies are being used to reduce the pressure on
GP practices, improve services and access available to patients.
challenges and the shift to primary prevention in general practice to
improve population health outcomes and target health
maturity of clusters and the progress of cluster working in different
Local Health Boards, identifying examples of best practice.
and national leadership supporting the development of the cluster
infrastructure; how the actions being taken complement those in the Welsh
Government's primary care plan and 2010 vision, Setting
- Greater detail
on the aspects being evaluated, the support being supplied centrally and
the criteria in place to determine the success or otherwise of clusters,
including how input from local communities is being incorporated into the
development and testing being undertaken.
invited views on this issue. The consultation closed on 3 February 2017.
response from the Cabinet Secretary for Health, Well-being and Sport.
on the inquiry into Primary Care: Clusters (PDF 735KB)
Government Response – January 2018 (PDF 277KB)
debate on the Committee’s report took place on 17 January 2018.