Polysystems

Polysystems are a clinically-led model of care involving all clinical partners across a local population in the active care management of that population. Using a networked approach, polysystems are designed to give local clinicians the opportunity to start managing their patients across the whole population rather than just across an individual list base. A polysystem is supported by a primary care-led polyclinic hub at its heart. All practices, pharmacies, health centres and other points of service provision are part of the network and should contribute to the development of services for the local population.

The polysystem model gives Londoners greater flexibility in seeing GPs due to extended opening hours, while offering a range of services traditionally only available in hospital. Polysystems provide appropriate urgent care services in the community which reduces the use of A&E and improves the management of long term conditions.

Polysystems seek to redesign services across traditional boundaries of primary, community and secondary care to deliver an integrated service in the community. Polysystems services reflect the needs of the local population, delivering a more efficient and patient-centred healthcare service.

A number of tools for commissioners were developed as part of the Healthcare for London programme. The implementation of the ongoing polysystem programme is currently being led by NHS London.