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Nurse at heart of groundbreaking primary care centre

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GPs in the South West have paid tribute to their nurse practitioner for helping make a major new primary care facility a success.

The £10.5m Frome Health Centre opened in January, and includes an operating theatre, pharmacy and opticians as well as standard primary care services.

It is described by its owners, the Frome Medical Practice, as the “biggest and most advanced primary care facility not only in the South West but very possibly the whole of the UK”.

However, the practice has singled out nurse practitioner Polly McRae, who is also one of its partners, for making the centre even more “unique”.

Ms McRae, 44, joined the practice 11 years ago and was made a partner in 2009.

Dr Tina Merry, the practice’s senior partner, said: “Having Polly as part of the leadership team is essential to our future growth and development.

“Most medical practices are driven solely by GPs. What has made such a big difference for us is that right from the outset we have been able to rely on the input and the contribution of Polly to make sure that a theory actually works in practice,” she added.

Ms McRae said she was “very proud” of being a nurse partner and the opportunity it has given her to shape and influence care.

“Working at the Frome Medical Centre has been like a breath of fresh air,” she said. “From the very outset, the practice here has given responsibility and encouragement to the nursing staff.

“My ideas on how nurses can make a real improvement to primary care have been supported and implemented.”

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