Category Archive News


QDoctor Video Consulting Platform

Howbeck Healthcare has recently met with QDoctor to explore opportunities to work together to support its Federations in the new extended access scheme from October 2018.  QDoctor offers a video consulting platform built by clinicians, interoperable with existing GPSoC IT systems and approved by NHS Digital flexible for practice or hub requirements.

QDoctor Logo


The RCGP announce endorsement of the Staffordshire Physician Associate Internship

Howbeck Healthcare is extremely proud to announce the Honorary Secretary’s office of the Royal College of General Practitioners have just endorsed the Staffordshire Physician Associate Internship.

Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent is leading the way nationally with our pioneering internship programme which is helping to support general practice and other healthcare providers.  There are nine PAs on the programme with a further eleven to commence over the coming months.

The Staffordshire Physician Associate Internship is the first initiative of its kind to offer structured placements for groups of PAs within primary and secondary care along with a structured teaching programme.


Staffordshire Physician Associate Internship

Howbeck Healthcare is extremely proud to be providing the project management support for the Staffordshire Physician Associate Internship initiated and developed within the North Staffordshire GP Federation.  This locally developed internship for Physician Associates (PA) works across primary and secondary care, to determine whether a new model of workforce and skill mix is both sustainable and clinically effective.

This programme was developed to appoint 12 Physician Associates (PAs) offering a 1-year internship working across primary and secondary to offer solutions to the local and national GP workforce issues and to offer the best patient care across Staffordshire.

As one of the first Physician Associate Internships to offer this structured programme of work, this is being closely observed and informing national workforce planning for roll out nationally.  We are extremely proud that the RCGP are in the process of endorsing the Staffordshire Physician Associate Programme.

Contact us for more information.


Docman Opportunities Within Primary Care

Dr Neil Paul recently met with Docman to discuss possible collaboration opportunities in primary care.

Docman 10 is the latest version of Docman GP that has been engineered from scratch to provide a cloud based platform delivered through a web browser.  The architecture has been designed specifically to accommodate the new ways of working to deliver primary care at scale.  Whilst there are obvious benefits of moving to the cloud (removal of practice server, no back up requirement, automatic software updates etc), the real benefit is the way it can start to support federated working.  The initial federated use of Docman 10 is the ability for users to be ‘members’ of several practices enabling those with the rights to view information from any agreed practice.  This is critical for new ways of working like GP practice extended hours.

Docman has plans to work with primary care to build on the Docman cloud platform to support other new ways of working that federations are moving towards such as, federated back-office, cross organisational workflows, centralised scanning and filing, centralised coding, cross federation admin resource utilisation and cross federation performance analytics.  Docman is currently looking for development partners to work with to help define how the platform can be extended to address these new ways or working.



Launch of Dr Neil Paul’s Blog

Dr Neil Paul has officially launched his new blog site which can be found at  In developing this site Dr Neil Paul recognises that he comes across lots of products that have potential to transform the lives of both clinicians and patients, but many struggle to get any publicity, feedback or uptake. He wanted to create a space for users to find out about these products and to connect innovators with early adopters. He also wants to share his thoughts and experiences of primary care IT and encourage innovation.

Included within the site is a directory of companies with solutions for primary care and companies are invited to list their product direct on the site.  To do this please visit


Digital Urinalysis within Primary Care

Dr Neil Paul and Mike Pyrah recently met with Katharine Ward, Chief Commercial Officer to discuss possible collaboration opportunities with Healthy IO.  Healthy IO is the first company to be CE accredited for transforming the smart phone camera into a clinical grade medical device. The first product is digital urinalysis which enables patients to undertake accurate urine testing at home, enabling self-management of long term conditions,  reduction in face to face clinical time, prevention of admissions (embedded in the right pathways) as well as driving the prevention and quality agenda.

This product and the company’s Chief Commercial Officer, Katherine Ward were recently selected for the NHS Innovation Accelerator.  More information about Healthy IO can be found at


Digital Solutions for Wound Care and Management

Howbeck Healthcare recently met with Urgo Medical to discuss joint working opportunities with Howbeck Healthcare and the Federations it supports in innovative digital solutions for wound care and management. Urgo Medical was established in 2002 and is now a major contributor to the UK wound healing community, offering a complete range of wounds management dressing and bandages.


Working at scale within primary care develops at pace!

Howbeck Healthcare has been working with the GP Federations that it supports on a range of ‘Working at Scale’ initiatives, taking on board views and comments of local practices of what’s important.  Following an initial scoping exercise, identified areas of focus are back office functions such as Human Resources and Health and Safety as well as shared clinical services, CQC support and training and development.

Following the identification of a range of suppliers, Howbeck Healthcare is facilitating a ‘pitching event’ for representatives across its Federations to hear first hand some of the services which can be offered ‘at scale’ whilst ensuring a high quality, cost effective service for practices.


Performance appraisal and learning within the primary care setting

The key to developing a high performing culture is understanding your workforce – giving them the opportunity to drive their own performance and development, and you the opportunity to support them along the way.

Howbeck Healthcare recently met with the Managing Director of Thirsty Horses Ltd, Ray Pendleton to discuss how Workpal, an organisational development tool which brings together performance appraisal and learning to deliver true performance management could be utilised within the primary care setting.  Thirsty Horses is an Organisational Development consultancy, established in 2009 that specialises in helping its clients achieve a high performance culture.


Support for GP Practices – General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)

Practice Managers across the Federations that we support have requested assistance in ensuring they are prepared for the new General Data Protection Regulations which come into force on the 25th May 2018.  Howbeck Healthcare has responded and will shortly be launching its bespoke ‘GDPR package of support’ for GP practices.

The package of support will include the provision of a Data Protection Officer, all policies and procedures required to support in compliance along with training and support for Practice Managers. Additional support will also be included with assistance in the completion and uploading of evidence for the new Information Governance Toolkit.

For further information please contact us.