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The named GP scheme appears not to have delivered hoped-for results in terms of improved continuity of care and reduced emergency hospital admissions for older patients. This suggests that the policy of allocating a named GP is not, in itself, effective and more sophisticated interventions are needed."

- Dr Peter Tammes

An NHS scheme to give every patient aged 75 and over in England a named GP responsible for their care has failed to deliver hoped-for improvements, according to a study by researchers at the University of Bristol’s Centre for Academic Primary Care, and funded by the School for Primary Care Research. The scheme, introduced by the NHS Employers and General Medical Services in April 2014, was designed to improve the care of older people and keep them healthy, independent and out of hospital.

The SPCR funded study, published in BMJ Open, found that the named GP scheme did not lead to patients seeing the same GP more often (continuity of care) or reduce rates of emergency admission to hospital. Instead it found that continuity of care decreased after the scheme was introduced and the risk of emergency hospital admissions increased.

Read the full press release from the Centre for Academic Primary Care, University of Bristol

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Paper: The impact of a named GP scheme on continuity of care and emergency hospital admission. A cohort study among older patients in England, 2012-2016. Published in BMJ Open. 23 September 2019.