The three practices currently forming Healthstone cover most of Poole with over 22,000 patients coming from a wide area including the town centre, right across to the east and into Westbourne, south to Canford Cliffs and Sandbanks as well as north towards Bearcross. Whilst patients are registered individually to each respective practice - there is a long history of collaboration between the practices.
Historically, Herbert Avenue Medical Centre, Madeira Medical Centre and Heatherview Medical Centre have worked collaboratively on a number of back-office projects. This long history of shared working practice has been the backbone that has made the transition to a federation of practices a much easier process. The Fernside Surgery is a branch surgery of the Heatherview Medical Centre.
So what of the future?
We hope that as the government makes GPs take over real budgets, we can be at the heart of these changes locally. We believe we can help build a better, more patient-focused, health service. On a simple level, that might just mean that an observation of inefficiency - or an idea for a better, more local, service - can be fed in and worked through, rather than be lost in the minutes of a stuffy meeting at the Department for Health.
There is no doubt that in a cost constrained environment we will have to use our services more efficiently and move some services to the community. You too have your part to play in the debate about the development of the health service; please use our 'Have Your Say' blog to help support and shape this process.
Map showing the Healthstone practices in Poole:
View Healthstone Practices in a larger map