Providing patients in North Somerset with great healthcare has always been a top priority for GP practices in and around Weston-super-Mare. That’s why, in early 2018, the practices that now make up Pier Health came together to make sure they could continue serving local communities in the best possible way. The first step towards our health partnership was a powerful but simple message: to make our practices more sustainable, effective and resilient.
Powered by advice and support from OpenJunction, a steering group of GPs and practice managers was formed to discuss shared challenges and suggest solutions based on collective experience. The first wheels of a super-partnership in Weston-super-Mare were set in motion.
Next came a super-partnership deed, outlining what each practice could expect from collaborating and what the long-term benefits to staff and patients would look like. This was to be a ‘coalition of the willing’ – an association where each practice would remain independently managed and operated, but benefit from the support of other practices, GPs and healthcare managers in the area.
Throughout the formation of the Pier Health super-partnership, the steering group presented their vision to a wider group of partners to both ensure support and consensus – a landmark journey of local healthcare expertise, collaboration, negotiation and engagement.
With a super-partnership deed in place, the final phase – a July 2019 rollout – was made possible by the election of a board of non-executive directors and chief executive officer. They join the executive team and staff from across the partnership in staying united, involved and excited by the remarkable opportunities that lie ahead for the Pier Health and the communities we serve.