Spare a thought for your Practice Manager this week…

Last week was the week that PMs dread the most. It was year end and the constant demands were never ending. If it were just QOF that would be lovely but our CCG and NHSE colleagues also had a mountain of deadlines that we were expected to fulfill. I won’t bore you with a full list but besides QOF, PPA claims and the usual enhanced service reporting that goes on, there were end of year compliance reports for all local schemes and national DES frameworks, risk assessments, infection control audits, financial returns and don’t get me started on PCSE stuff!

This year we have also been blessed with the new Data Protection and Security Toolkit, which as some colleagues were reporting took up to 30 hours to complete and yes, also by the end of March.

In September 2016, I set up a Facebook group for PMs that I thought would get a few people interested in sharing best practice and knowledge with like-minded colleagues. We now have over 2500 members, and it’s very active indeed. Some were saying it was the only thing getting them through year end this year.

I have been in general practice for almost 10 years now and PMs are under more pressure than ever before to keep many more plates spinning.

Don’t get me wrong, I am not complaining. I love my job and I am fortunate to have the support of a very strong partnership and a great team of people who are very committed to striving for excellence.

If you are reading this blog this week, my plea is a simple one…………we know you didn’t want to hear from us about getting appraisals sorted or doing those mandatory training elements you’ve put off but please spare a kind thought for your PM after what they’ve been through last week. We can be found having a lie down in a dark room somewhere today!

Sarah Longland is a highly experienced commercial and NHS senior manager with over twenty two years’ experience in HR and general management positions in both commercial settings and more recently in General Practice.

Currently a Business Manager of Sutton Coldfield Group Practice, Sarah has also worked as Head of HR within BADGER GP out of hours’ services in Birmingham and most recently as General Manager of a 10 surgery super partnership in Birmingham.

Sarah has for the last 2 years, alongside her role as a practice manager, supported the merger of a 32 practice GP super-partnership partnership in Birmingham and held a board position with them as Interim HR Director, up to and since merger. Sarah has facilitated mergers in general practice at both a strategic and operational level and is now supporting another merger in North Birmingham.

She has also presented to the BMA General Practitioners Committee on the subject of the corporate GP partnership model and its benefits to patients and partners.

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