Primary Care Initiative of the Year

As the first point of contact for most patients seeking healthcare, the delivery of safe primary care is a critical component of ensuring a sustainable NHS. The NHS Long Term Plan described several new ways of working in primary and community care that can increase the focus on patient safety, including the development of integrated care services, the Digital Minor Illness Referral Service, and the work of ‘extensivists’ – GPs working in the community but able to follow patients into hospital. The advent of primary care networks also brings further opportunities to promote a safety culture and focus on continuous quality improvement and patient safety in primary care.

The covid-19 pandemic has led to a significant transformation in primary care delivery over recent months, with patient safety and infection prevention at the heart of these changes. This award will recognise primary care teams that have found new ways to deliver consistently safe care despite the challenges of covid-19, or who were driving significant improvements in patient safety pre-pandemic.


This award is open to all NHS primary care teams who can demonstrate improved patient safety and outcomes.


  • Provide a clear rationale for the work, and provide context as to why the initiative or improvements were required.
  • What was the ambition for the project, and how did this draw on, or differ from, existing best practice?
  • Outline the targets set for patient safety and quality improvement, and what measures were put in place to achieve them.


  • Clearly demonstrate the benefits of the initiative on quality of care, using quantitative evidence to show tangible positive impacts on the safety of patients within a primary care setting.
  • Discuss any other positive outcomes that were a result of the initiative, which could include improved patient experience, waiting time reduction, capacity increase or optimised treatment pathways.
  • Include patient and/or staff testimonials supporting the efficacy of the initiative.


  • Show how these improvements in provision of safe, high-quality primary care are replicable and scalable.
  • Outline the efforts made to share best practice, or examples of where this project has embedded and spread to other departments, settings or organisations.


  • Clearly evidence how the initiative has improved value for patients and staff, in terms of patient experience, staff satisfaction and quality of care.
  • If possible, provide evidence of value creation in other areas, in terms of increased capacity, reduced costs, reduced variation and/or improved efficiencies.


  • Show how patients were involved in decisions around their care, and their views were embedded in the design of the initiative
  • Provide clear evidence of a multidisciplinary approach, with all relevant parties fully engaging in the work, including managers, medics and nurses as well as patients and families, and how this has led to improved safety.
  • Detail how a culture has been developed in which all members of staff can raise concerns and make suggestions for improvements.
Primary Care Initiative of the Year

To find out more

Contact Ryan Bessent for information on how to get involved with the Patient Safety Awards 2021 on 0207 608 9045 or email at