GP Confederation Announce New Director Appointments

Conexus Healthcare Managing Director Stepping Down

Wakefield GP confederation, Conexus Healthcare has announced the successful appointment of four new directors, following the decision to create new board positions for a Nurse Director and Practice Manager Director.

Formed and owned by its members, Conexus Healthcare includes 35 GP practices across Wakefield, which serve 370,000 residents collectively. Originally seeking only two new directors, Conexus Healthcare are excited to be welcoming the new appointments, after a rigorous selection process demonstrated a number of exceptionally high-calibre candidates.

Recognising the unique skill sets, experience and professional abilities on offer to support the aim of being a voice for primary care in Wakefield, Conexus chose to appoint four new board directors.

Conexus Healthcare managing director, Antony Nelson commented: “The new appointments mark a fantastic milestone for Conexus. At our last Annual Meeting, member practices set their confederation a challenge; to give practice staff real opportunities to develop primary care in Wakefield and be a true voice for general practice across the district. Bolstering our leadership team with such experienced professionals, is incredible news which will deliver tangible benefits for the region and further afield.”

Newly appointed practice manager director, Tim Johns (practice business manager at Health Care First) manages a patient list of 32,000. Tim commented: “I have been watching the progression of Conexus for some time and hoped that there might be a way for me to get involved and contribute to supporting the GP workforce in Wakefield. I am always interested in learning from other practices and organisations, from a wide range of sectors, and keen to share that learning.  With a background working with customers and consumers, I aim to bring some of that experience to Conexus too.”

Tim continued: “Practice managers (PMs) are under increasing demands to innovate, manage change and improve services, under the NHS Long Term Plan. I’m looking forward to sharing my insights and those of my fellow practice managers, to see where we can support and develop Wakefield’s practice managers. Currently, clinicians get protected time for development and training – this is something I’d love to see more of when it comes to support for our hard working PMs – developing standards for the job role, helping them manage the strategic and operational parts of their work and supporting practice staff around them to take on the more specialist roles and resource that working at scale will generate.”

The second new practice manager director James Day, works as a practice manager at Outwood Park Medical Centre. James is an experienced practice manager with 10 years of proven delivery in challenging and pressurised practices. He commented: “I’ve seen first hand exactly how much of a struggle some practice managers face day by day. It can be an unforgiving and overwhelming role at times, so I feel incredibly fortunate to be at a practice with a fantastic supportive team around me. It’s an enjoyable place to work and the best part is seeing how you can help your team and your patients. It’s about making the experience good for everyone in primary care.”

“I’m looking forward to bringing my personal insight to the table and sharing my learning to help PMs see a lot of the resources we need to succeed, are already there. It’s a great comfort to know you’re not alone and our practice managers in Wakefield are some of the most effective resources available. PMs need to support one another, creating a culture of confidence and support across the spectrum.”

“Being a PM is a very hands-on role especially if you’re a smaller practice without other managers so I’m looking forward to bring that real life practical voice to the role representing my fellow practice managers.”

Newly appointed nurse director Joanne Ambler, a practice nurse from Maybush Medical Centre already works within GP Care Wakefield, an evening and weekend extended access clinic provided by Conexus in partnership with local practices. Joanne commented: “I’m really excited to be joining the Board to give a voice for hardworking nurses and healthcare assistants. After starting shifts in GP Care Wakefield two years ago, I know what a friendly, innovative team they are and have seen the difference working like this makes to patients.”

“Practice nursing is so varied and no two days are the same. From baby clinics to chronic disease management, you’re giving advice and making a difference all day long which is lovely but its surprising how isolated you can feel in that consultation room. Information and networking opportunities with other nurses can be hard to come by but we need these things to know we’re not alone.”

After 17 years in practice nursing, this is a real chance to make sure the opinions, ideas and voices of nurses are heard and acted upon better than ever before.”

The second nurse director Caroline Stroud, works as a specialist nurse practitioner at Health Care First specialising in diabetes care. Caroline commented: “In 2013 I moved into general practice nursing and have been in awe of practice nurses ever since. The variety, specialism and experience of these professionals make such a life-changing different to thousands of local people everyday. Making up half of the workforce, it’s essential we’re represented when planning and delivering new primary care at scale services.

I applied for the role because I thought it would be something different and a real opportunity to make a footprint on a wider scale alongside my practice work. I’ve seen first-hand the challenges and opportunities of upping services to scale from the merger of the two practices that make up my practice at Health Care First. Changing processes you’ve had for years is massive but when you see the difference it makes to patients, it’s worth it. I want to bring that learning and reality of being a nurse back to the Conexus board so I can help more of my fellow nurses on the ground.”