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New Medical Practice. Where Does A GP Turn?


What options are available when it comes to financing a new medical practice? You may be at a crossroads, what are your options and who do you talk to?

There are many challenges to drive the medical business forward, but every vision has to have a starting place.

One of the initial options for GPs is to open a dialogue with the Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG). The CCG are responsible for commissioning health services to meet the requirements of patient care in your locality. But at this time the purse stings are controlled by the Area Team & NHS England. The CCGs are now gaining more responsibility for the commissioning of the vast majority of local delivered NHS services along with an ever changing landscape including the Health and Well being boards. So where does one start with so many different groups all purporting to do the same thing.   There are alternative ways to build this very necessary conversation and the need to develop a partnership mindset is so important from the outset in order to bring an ambition to life.

Do You Want To Open Up To The Competition?

Your local CCG is actually made up of local GPs and it may be a case that you feel reticent to divulge your plans and aspirations before they are worked up into a credible and implementable plan with the CCG. The reason, as the the CCG consists of groups of other general practices from your local area they may not wish to federate or join with your practice or that they have a fear that a new practice in or near their area may have a detrimental impact on their business. Sometimes all you need to build momentum for your dream is a discussion with an experienced resource to understand that your vision is worthwhile shaping and pursuing.

It can be said that when the process starts, everybody has their own vested interests. One of the biggest challenges is to ensure that the interests of the GP on the ground delivering the service takes paramount importance, rather than a group of shareholders just interested in creating another property investment.

An Independent Sounding Board

At these challenging and exciting times a GP practice requires someone to listen with empathy to what issues they have to resolve and more often than not be a sounding board. To have the opportunity to talk to skilled people from diverse backgrounds, such as development, finance, architecture, planning and skills in wider than just the medical fields whose knowledge of dealing with brownfield sites, Greenfield sites, population dynamics, changes to existing surgeries and adding separate surgeries to existing buildings, is such an important aspect of the process. From a construction and creativity aspect, this is something that the CCG does not possess. The CCG, whilst a critical resource for the allocation of commissioning funds, do not have the skill-sets to understand land acquisition and building requirements.

One of the objectives to develop a new practice is to provide better services for the local community. Whilst the CCG drives revenue to deliver the services and the NHS initiates the wider community health programme, there has to be a strategy in place to build recognition and agreement.

The objective on a personal level for a GP is to turn an aspiration to exit a sometimes financially difficult situation to something that is new and organised. This enables the business to deliver a better lifestyle for the new involved GPs . At the same time, a better service is delivered and maintained within the local community.

How Does This Start?

‘A conversation’ with an independent party, this can assist in developing a robust plan to present to the CCG, area team and then to the NHS. The aim is to understand and document how you would like to deliver your services to the local area and present the solution with a degree of empathy towards what the community actually needs.

There are other places to consider input from , such as the Local Medical Council (LMC). Again these bodies are not skilled in the property delivery aspects but are very skilled in pointing the way for advice and can create the introductions to many skilled and dynamic parties who may have the specialist skill missing from your team


Talking to those who have experience and knowledge of the delivery of medical practices is always a sensible option to begin your journey. If there is a bond and both parties understand the ethos of what is looking to be achieved, it can become a journey that doesn’t feel isolating or complicated.

A Collaboration

The Charles Higgins Partnership is exactly what the name states, a partnership. This is an affiliation between the CHP the GPs and the NHS to create an all-encompassing collaborative effort. Our prime focus at CHP is to deliver the facilities to GPs, so they can deliver the services for primary care within their community.

To begin your conversation call Jon on 01202 744990 or email jon@charleshiggins.co.uk , it would be good to hear from you.


“To end my working days in such a place considering that 31 years ago when I started we worked from two very small rooms. It’s been magnificent.”

Dr Geoff Walder, Retired Senior Partner, Lilliput Surgery, Sandbanks

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© 2013 Charles Higgins