One of England’s most senior GP commissioning leads is calling for consortia to recognise the potential contributions of other health professionals.

East of England director of GP commissioning Paul Zollinger-Read told HSJ’s sister magazine Nursing Times he wanted leaders from nursing and allied health professions to get involved in the emerging consortia.

He said: “One off the key QIPP (Quality, Innovation, Productivity and Prevention) themes is to move care out of hospitals. Who’s best placed to ensure that? It’s nurses.”

He added:  “The whole direction of commissioning is how do we improve clinical outcomes and the quality of services and do that cost effectively. We need all the people involved in delivering those services.”

Until last month Dr Zollinger-Read was chief executive of NHS Cambridgeshire, in health secretary Andrew Lansley’s constituency.

He is encouraging consortia in his region to engage other health professions and plans to host a workshop showcasing work they are already carrying out.

However, Dr Zollinger-Read stopped short of saying that every consortium should have a nurse on its board, saying he did not wish to “dictate” the future structure of the emerging organisations.

The comments follow last week’s letter from NHS chief executive Sir David Nicholson stating that the clusters of PCTs being formed would need to contain a director of nursing and a medical director.