COVID-19 has meant activity in general practice has changed dramatically over the last 2 years. Practices have moved rapidly towards remote triage and care delivery to reduce risk of infection. Many have also delivered a large proportion of the COVID-19 vaccination programme as part of Primary Care Networks (PCNs), alongside their usual patient care.
Understanding the total workload of general practice is vital for planning, research and supporting practices under pressure. However, the data we have on activity in general practice are limited, especially compared with hospital data. This has made it challenging to accurately track the ongoing impact of COVID-19 on general practice.
This short analysis from The Health Foundation uses data from different sources, some publicly available and some not, to explore recent trends in general practice activity in England. We also present data on the general practice workforce, to help contextualise activity levels. It highlights what the data can tell us – and importantly, what it can’t.
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