What Are Group Clinics?
Group Clinics (GCs) are a transformative way of delivering planned care and supporting people to take control and manage their health issues. They work especially well for people who live with long-term conditions such as:
These conditions account for the bulk of primary care’s chronic disease management workload and require mandatory QOF reviews.
GCs build a sense of community and facilitate peer support, while enabling health and care teams to stay connected in supporting those with long term conditions. Group consultations and clinics can be delivered in a single session or as part of an extended programme of care and support.
What Are the Benefits of GCs?
- Significant clinician time savings. Clinicians report that clinical reviews in GCs take around 5 minutes per patient compared to 15-25 minutes when delivered one to one. Clinicians usually review 6-8 patients in 30 minutes, representing a 60-80% time efficiency gain.
- Quality and QOF improvement. A GP practice that adopted group clinics as their first point of contact for people living with diabetes saw a 18% uplift in QOF in its first year, with a further uplift in year two.
- Improved experience of care: Clinicians report that group clinics restore joy to both remote and face to face consultations. Patients report extremely high levels of satisfaction with their group clinic experiences too.
- Sustainable delivery of personalised care: The group clinic process mirrors care and support planning because patients see their results and decide their questions before the clinician joins. Then after their consultation with the clinician, they are supported to set goals. GCs will help you deliver the Year of Care.
- Better outcomes in diabetes: There is Level One (randomised controlled trial) evidence that group clinics improve HbA1c and blood pressure in diabetes compared to one-to-one appointments .
How Do GCs Work?
This five-minute video provides a brief introduction to GCs and brings the process to life:
What About the Admin Time?
This webinar produced by Redmoor ELC provides tips on how to minimise admin:
Patient Facing Animations
The following videos are designed to be shared with patients.
What are GCs and what benefits do they bring?
An explanation of the GC consent process:
Although new to Lincolnshire, GCs have already been implemented successfully in many areas of the UK. The following case studies tell the story of practices that have successfully introduced GCs across a broad spectrum of patients.
Yes, GCs have already been successfully implemented in many areas of the UK. Please see the Case Studies section for success stories from practices around the country.
If your patients are not able to participate in video group clinics, an alternative option is to run face-to-face group clinics. Please contact us for further details.
The E-learning for Health module under Training on this page provides comprehensive information on clinician/patient confidentiality and consent issues you may encounter when setting up GCs.
- Computer with webcam: A computer with a webcam is needed so you can see your patients and they can see you.
- Headphones: A set of headphones with a built-in microphone will minimise any background noise for you and the other participants.
- Second screen: Ideally, the clinician should have a second screen (or a second computer) so he or she can refer to patient records as needed. This information should not be visible to any of the participants.
Who needs to be trained?
This short video walks you through choosing your GC delivery team:
Best practice in GC spread shows that a minimum of 4 people must be trained to build a successful GC team. The people who need to be trained include:
- Administrators who will be supporting GC scheduling, patient recruitment
- Clinicians who will be consulting in GCs e.g. practice nurses, GPs, clinical pharmacists
- People who will act as GC facilitatorsg. health care assistants, general practice assistants, care co-ordinators, social prescribing link workers, health and wellbeing coaches, experienced receptionists or administrators keen to take on this new role as part of their personal and professional development
How much time will it take?
Like any change, in the early days it takes time to introduce new processes and prepare. If you plan this change to become a regular part of your clinic delivery model from the start, you will realise the benefits described within 3 months. Once you see clinician time-savings and the positive impact on QOF, making this change will save time and improve quality and QOF payments.
Link to free e-learning:
There are two free modules of e-learning available via E-Learning for Health. Click on the link below to access this training:
An illustrated guide for NHS trusts and foundation trusts on video consultations in the NHS:
An illustrated guide for NHS staff on video consultations in the NHS.