Research Article

Primary care development zones.

BMJ 1993; 306 doi: (Published 30 January 1993) Cite this as: BMJ 1993;306:323
  1. V Beardshaw,
  2. P Gordon,
  3. D Plamping
  1. King's Fund London Acute Services Initiative.


    Most commentators on the Tomlinson report have agreed with its emphasis on improving primary and community care. The three elements of such a strategy are a remedial programme to bring primary care up to national standards, a programme to provide such services to people with non-standard needs such as mobile Londoners, ethnic minorities, and homeless people, and the development of an expanded model of primary care. No one model will be appropriate across all of London. The process should start with an audit of existing resources and services within each community, together with an analysis of needs. From this would develop a local programme with specific plans for investment in premises, staffing, training, and management. New contractual mechanisms may be needed to attract practitioners, improve their premises, secure out of hours services, and provide medical cover for community beds. There should also be incentives for closer working between primary and secondary services. No developments on the scale needed for London have been carried out in primary care within the lifetime of the NHS--but their success will be critical to the calibre of health services for Londoners into the next century.