New approach to Development of Primary Premises across Forth Valley

Proposals to develop and improve GP premises across the majority of Forth Valley will now be aligned in a new long-term planning approach for primary care and other healthcare facilities across Forth Valley.

Originally the plan was to develop separate business cases to improve GP and primary care premises in a number of locality areas – Clackmannanshire, Stirling, Falkirk East and Falkirk West and Falkirk Central (which was being taken forward as part of the Falkirk Community Hospital masterplan). However, in response to new national planning arrangements for healthcare capital projects recently introduced by the Scottish Government, the majority of these proposals will now be incorporated into a new Whole System Plan for the Forth Valley area.

However, as the proposals for the Stirling locality were at a more advanced stage, these will be considered as a separate individual business case under the existing national capital planning processes for NHS facilities. These proposals focus on the need for improved primary care premises for Plean, Cowie and Orchard House which have been identified as the key priority areas, along with other a range of service improvements across the wider Stirling locality area.

Further guidance is awaited on the new national capital planning arrangements for and how they may impact on the process and timescales for the primary care premises proposals in the other locality areas.

The Forth Valley Primary Care Premises Programme was developed to tackle rising demand for GP and community health services and address the size, condition and layout constraints faced by many GP Practices across the area. It sets out proposals for a major programme of investment to improve local healthcare facilities to ensure they can accommodate the staff and services required now and, in the future, as well as redesign the way a number of existing GP services are delivered and developed to meet the commitments of the national General Medical Services Contract.

Dr Scott Williams, Deputy Director for Primary Care Services in NHS Forth Valley, said “Staff working across NHS Forth Valley and both local Health and Social Care Partnerships remain committed to designing and developing GP services and facilities which will meet the future needs of local communities.

“A lot of preparation work has already been carried out with local staff, GP colleagues and community representatives to develop the Initial Agreement for the Forth Valley

Primary Care Premises Programme. We really appreciate the contribution of everyone involved and will ensure the extensive information and feedback gathered so far is reflected in the Whole System Plan being developed for the wider Forth Valley area.”