Primary Care Navigator

Ageuklogo‘Navigators’, based at GP practices, proactively find and co-ordinate health, social care and volunteer services to people with long term conditions, reducing A&E visits, out of hours calls to GPs, and overall GP visits.
50% of GP appointments and 70% of acute and primary care budgets are spent on people with long term conditions. Research by NHS London and the Kings Fund has shown that patients and carers find it hard to find and access help, whether from health, social care providers, or the third sector; and that the best place to provide help is in primary care.
A pilot at Age UK Kensington started with the patient: identifying their needs, whether for gardening or help with benefits; helping them access and use services and continue to use them over time; improving communication across health, social care, and volunteer help; and giving feedback to GP commissioners on services.
The pilot found that the role works well whether the team is large or small; whether situated in health, social care, third sector or the community; and that there is a good business case to the GP of adopting the approach, with a documented net saving of £1288 per patient per year.
Health Service Journal article.

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