Primary Care - A New Direction

 

Introduction

Details on the proposals for primary care set out in the Health Strategy 2001 are presented in this document. The model of primary care is founded on the core principles of the Health Strategy (equity, people-centredness, quality, accountability) as well as principles which specifically relate to primary care – continuity of care, a holistic approach and improved population health. *

The aims of the proposed developments are to provide:

The document is divided into three parts. Part 1 examines the case for change in the current system, based on an analysis of the strengths and weaknesses of primary care in Ireland, the evidence base for change, international primary care models and also what the consultation process for the Health Strategy revealed about primary care. Part 2 sets out a description of the model of primary care. Part 3 outlines the requirements for implementation of the model. These proposals are developed into an action plan, a set of targets and a timescale for phased implementation. The new primary care model will be introduced on a phased basis, in partnership with all the relevant stakeholders. Existing infrastructure will be used where possible and the issue of public-private partnership will be explored. While the new model is being introduced, primary care in general will be strengthened and improved on a national basis.

* Population health is an approach to health that aims to improve the health of the entire populations or sub-groups within the population and to reduce health inequalities among population groups.