We have a lay chair, too (news, page 6, 6 May).

Jennie Duncombe was elected to take the chair of this primary care group from April. She has worked extensively on access issues for disabled people and, as a user of care services, can bring a valuable perspective to our work. She can also tap into the many networks that need to be used to deliver the new agenda.

Obviously, a clinical background is beneficial, but we have arranged for one of our GPs to provide her with clinical advice. There is no denying that the amount of work involved in being chair was a factor in the seven GPs feeling unable to assume this role from April, but their reaction to her election was very positive.

Owen Richards

Chief executive

Brentwood PCG