Frontline nurses designing primary care services

Frontline nurses designing primary care services

Posted on March 30, 2018

In the light of growing numbers of people living with co-morbidities and needing complex care interventions, the European Commission has become more sensitive towards the need of strengthening primary care systems. As already highlighted in the Companion Report, a stronger role for primary care represents a prominent priority across EU Member States.

The Commission has now taken a step forward with its publication of the report “A new drive for primary care in Europe: rethinking the assessment tools and methodologies”. The report confirms that performance assessment in primary care paves the way for better health outcomes and improving the overall health ecosystem.

However, to ensure that performance assessment maximises its potential, it is crucial to adopt an outcome-oriented approach considering patients’ experience and values, the so called PREMS and PROMS.

If the EU Member States aim to succeed in developing primary care, a whole system and mindset change at the policy, practice and education level is needed with a shift from intervention to prevention. There is an increasing evidence that primary care nurses contribute significantly to health outcomes, leading to patients staying longer at home. As such, moving care to the community fosters the added value of health as a driver of well-being, productivity and growth, particularly relevant in the political context of boosting the social economy.

Nurses play already a significant role in enhancing primary care, now EU policy-makers and politicians need to translate this evidence into EU policies and funding programs.