Rose Fells, practice manager at The Scott Practice in Doncaster, sits on Doncaster LMC’s committee. She spoke to Management in Practice following the recent rejection of a motion that proposed practice managers should be represented on LMCs.
The proposal, which also said practice nurses and non-clinical staff members should be included, was proposed by Mid Mersey LMC to be debated at the conference of England LMC representatives last Friday (22 November), but was not picked as a topic for discussion.
Currently, there is a statutory obligation for LMCs to represent GPs but there is no obligation to represent other groups, such as practice managers.
Ms Fells has been sitting on her LMC’s committee for two years, after it made the executive decision to recruit a practice manager due to the ‘evolution of roles in the NHS’, she says.
‘I give a different viewpoint’
She, as a practice manager, brings something new to the meetings. ‘I give a different viewpoint,’ she says. ‘As managers we work on things in the background, things that the GPs don’t know and aren’t involved in.’
‘For example’, Ms Fells says, ‘we have a scheme of proactive care, which we have to report [about] to the CCG. Sometimes the reporting mechanism doesn’t fit with what’s in the specification. The GPs wouldn’t be aware of this but the managers would be. So in the meetings I could flag up that the request made by the CCG isn’t right and that the LMC needs to negotiate with the CCG.’
‘There should be a non-GP on the committee’
When asked if she agrees with Merseyside LMC that practice managers should be on LMCs , Ms Fells says, ‘I think it depends on the area and the mix of people that that area has on their board.’
‘I do think there should be a non-GP on the committee. And whether that’s a practice manager, a paramedic or a pharmacist doesn’t necessarily matter. Just somebody representing a different view from the doctors.’