LaingBuisson Awards 2015 Winner SSP Health - Primary Care Provider of the Year

LaingBuisson Awards 2015 Winner SSP Health - Primary Care Provider of the Year

Press release – 16 November 2015


It is a huge accolade for the entire SSP Health team to be acknowledged at these prestigious national awards.

SSP Health has received many national accolades over the years for enterprise, clinical leadership, improving access, care of vulnerable people and outstanding teamwork. SSP Health is proud of its team ethos and remains fully committed to improving patient services.

SSP Health is a GP-led primary care provider managing over 40 practices across the North West, caring for circa 150,000 patients. It was founded by Drs Sanjay and Shikha Pitalia. Both are GPs and have trained and worked in the NorthWest since the 1980s. Over the last 15 years, they have brought an new approach to healthcare. The priority has been to improve patient health and clinical outcomes with innovative solutions in an increasingly challenging NHS.

Well-established for 15 years, SSP Health pioneered federated working, a model now recommended by the King’s Fund and Nuffield Trust as a sustainable solution for modern General Practice.

The ethos of SSP Health has been to bring innovative styles of working to improve patient services and access. This includes economies of scale to allow individual practices to stay open, regardless of how small and remain viable for the future.


Examples of SSP Health’s innovation and effective use of healthcare resources:

  • Health outcomes – consistently high, objectively measured health improvements in all areas. SSP Health’s methodical and collaborative approach ensures high achievement for each practice.
  • Telemedicine – working with industry to promote new technology in surgeries to reduce the need to refer into secondary care
  • Consultants in the community – contracting directly with secondary care for Care of the Elderly to provide comprehensive geriatric reviews and dementia screening in care homes. Busy GPs struggled to find time to do this so SSP Health provided an outstanding solution for many elderly patients.
  • ‘Text-to-cancel’ – simple solution recognised by the RCGP for an enterprise award to reduce DNAs or ‘lost’ appointments
  • Remote access to patient notes – GPs can offer telephone consultations and share ‘on-call’ across a number of sites reducing the need to be based at any one surgery.
  • Optimising clinical skill-mix – GPs, nurses, health care assistants and pharmacists working in partnership to make best use of each discipline’s expertise. Better health outcomes are achieved more cost effectively.
  • Patient liaison officers – a role pioneered at one of SSP Health’s high-demand practices, now being replicated across the organisation and by other local practices. Dedicated staff member acting as a link between the practice and external agencies providing an advocacy service for patients to better access local services in the community. Welcomed by patients and carers, this has helped to improve the quality of life for many patients.  


Examples of SSP Health back office solutions to support smaller or isolated practices:

  • HR services – provided centrally for recruitment, performance management and standardised policies
  • Finance and estates support – back office team deals with claims, invoices, supplies, payroll, PAT testing, legionella checks, repairs and maintenance etc.
  • IT – in-house development and support for a bespoke system to benchmark performance, identify outliers and streamline access to information. SSP Health’s extranet system can be securely accessed anywhere in the world and means that every practice always has a contingency for business continuity.
  • Training and development – shared learning, expert training, career progression and educational needs are met with a co-ordinated approach for clinical and administrative staff. For example nurses receive regular updates on the management of long term conditions. HCAs part of accredited training programme. Managers on leadership development programme. Doctors supported for audit, appraisal and revalidation.

Response to NHS challenges:

  • Continuity of services – despite unprecedented national shortage of doctors, SSP Health’s shared working has provided medical cover across all sites even at periods of peak demand
  • Recruitment and retention – offering flexible working across the organisation reduces clinical isolation and helps retention and recruitment.
  • Leadership – SSP Health’s innovative model provides leadership at practice, regional and organisational level. This has been fundamental to successfully delivering safe and effective services.

For more information contact

Ms Noeleen Bailey, Chief Operating Officer