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New roles in Leeds: Preceptee Practice Nurses

Many people’s first point of contact with the NHS is through primary care services, which is one reason why GP surgeries are so important. Practice Nurses are essential members of the general practice team – they provide routine care such as immunisations, as well as ongoing care for people with recurring and long-term conditions. They help people stay well at home and avoid trips to the hospital.

There is a concerning shortage of Practice Nurses on the horizon, however; many are reaching retirement age and there aren’t enough nurses being trained to replace them. There are nurses from other practice areas that want to work in general practice, but find it challenging to find a job unless they already have GP experience.

This is why Leeds West CCG has developed the Preceptee Practice Nurse Programme (PPNP). This 12 month pilot programme began in September 2014 with a small group of participants, all nurses from other practice areas. They attend training courses and have work placements in various GP surgeries to develop their knowledge and skills. Halfway through the pilot, the programme is already getting positive feedback, both from participants and the GP surgeries they are placed in.

“I like this way of training because it feels structured and supported, it feels well organised, and I feel there is a step-by-step approach.”

Teresa Hale-Teresa, Preceptee Practice Nurse

The Practice Managers find it easy to be involved because not only is the training arranged for the participants, so is the HR management. It is a seamless way to bring in new Practice Nurses to fill the workforce gap.

“In my Preceptee’s case, they were up and running very quickly, and are now running their own clinics within a very short space of time. We would absolutely love to be involved with the PPNP moving forward.”Linda Thompson

– Linda, Practice Manager and PPNP HR Manager

With referrals to Practice Nurses on the rise and potential workforce shortages in the future, there is a clear need for the Preceptee Practice Nurse Programme. By ensuring there are enough skilled Practice Nurses in the workforce, GP surgeries can continue to support people in their communities to live the healthiest lives possible.

For further information on the PPNP please contact Gill Ramsden