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Formation of Defence Primary Healthcare: a new way of delivering firm base primary healthcare
  1. John E Burgess1,
  2. M Gall2,
  3. S Orr2 and
  4. S Kilbey2
  1. 1Headquarters Surgeon General, Lichfield, UK
  2. 2Head RAF Medical Services, High Wycombe, UK
  1. Correspondence to Dr John E Burgess, Defence Primary Healthcare, Headquarters Surgeon General, Coltman House, DMS Whittington, Lichfield WS14 9PY, UK; johnburgess{at}


Following the Strategic Defence and Security Review of 2010, the UK Surgeon General was directed to merge the delivery of primary healthcare from the three single Service organisations to a unified Defence Primary Healthcare. Although front line clinical staff were to be preserved, considerable savings were to be made in headquarters staff. This was one of the largest UK military medicine changes in delivery for a generation. The changes were completed on time with the transfer of UK and overseas general practice, specialist community services and dentistry, with a later requirement to add healthcare for the Reserves. The first years of this initiative have been remarkably successful, and Defence Primary Healthcare (DPHC) has progressively increased performance in all the QOF criteria measured by Defence Statistics.

  • Health services administration
  • health care manpower
  • health care quality
  • armed forces

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