WORKFORCE: A commissioning consortium in the capital has set out plans to give a range of non GPs a place on its board, including a nurse.

NHS Islington GP Commissioning Consortium, which was granted pathfinder status on 1 April, has said it plans to have a practice nurse vote on decisions as a board member, alongside seven GPs, a practice manager and two lay members.

The move follows increasing calls from organisations including the Royal College of Nursing for greater representation of health professionals other than GPs in consortia. HSJ’s sister title Nursing Times is campaigning to get a nurse on the board of every commissioning consortium.

The Islington consortium’s interim chair, Gillian Greenhough said “it would be a mistake” not to include nurses, given their central role in managing long term conditions.

She said: “This will get even more important with the move towards more integrated care.”

The future nurse board member will be elected by local practice nurses from the consortium’s 38 constituent practices.

Last week NHS Southwark director of commissioning and nursing Dame Donna Kinnair said there did not seem to be “room” for nurses to be involved in setting up consortia.

Speaking at an event held by the Florence Nightingale School of Nursing and Midwifery in  London, she told health minister Anne Milton: “There [are] GPs who see it as power… as their domain, and they are not inviting us to the party.”

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