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11 Jul 2021

6th Jul 2021

Name and Constituency of Member of Parliament
Cheryl Chan
MP for East Coast GRC

Question 80

To ask the Minister for Health (a) what is the enrolment progress of general practitioners (GPs) under the primary care network (PCN); (b) whether the enrolment rate of GPs in PCN meets the expected target set by the Ministry; and (c) what is the measurable impact of a strong PCN on chronic disease management

Written Answer

The Primary Care Networks, or PCNs, launched in January 2018, are self-organised groupings of GPs coming together to share resources such as coordinators and nurse counsellors. By doing so, they provide core ancillary services important for chronic disease management, such as diabetic eye and foot screening and nurse counselling.

As of May 2021, 10 primary care networks (PCNs) have been set up, involving over 600 clinics [1] and 875 General Practitioners (GPs). This accounts for more than 50% of Community Health Assist Scheme (CHAS) GP clinics, and meets our initial enrolment target. 

Two years after their establishment, we have observed improvements in adherence rates to recommended chronic disease care components. In 2019, 34% of diabetic patients being cared for at PCNs had completed their annual foot screening, and 50% had gone for their annual eye screening [2] , up from 28% and 47% in 2018, respectively.

We also found that existing diabetic patients had a better adherence rate compared to new PCN patients [3] , suggesting that patients who continue care with their PCN clinics receive more regular recommended screenings. We are encouraged by the early results, and will work with PCNs to ensure that their patients’ chronic conditions are well-controlled.

Note(s) to Question No(s)80:
[1] There are 604 PCN GP clinics as of May 2021.
[2] Derived from all PCN patients, including those who visit polyclinics within the same year.
[3] In 2019, we observed a higher foot screening take up rate of 37% for existing PCN patients compared to 27% for patients new to PCN; and similarly, for eye screening, 53% for existing PCN patients compared to 45% for patients new to PCN. 




Category: Parliamentary QA