• NHS England

Working with People and Communities to Improve General Practice in Primary Care

Enhance primary care services through engaging and inclusive strategies with this online course from NHS England.

Doctor sitting and discussing charts with patient

Working with People and Communities to Improve General Practice in Primary Care

  • 2 weeks

  • 3 hours per week

  • Digital certificate when eligible

  • Introductory level

Find out more about how to join this course

Improve healthcare delivery and patient satisfaction in just two weeks

Incorporating more engaging and inclusive practices into your workspace can improve productivity and foster positive work environments. In the healthcare system, it can go a step further and save lives.

On this two-week course from NHS England, discover how you can help primary care settings by supporting diverse communities. Learn how to implement patient-centric approaches that prioritise inclusivity and empowerment.

Explore different models of inclusive primary care engagement

On the first week of this course, you’ll explore various models of primary care engagement, ranging from patient participation groups to community partnerships.

You’ll gain insights into effective strategies for fostering inclusivity and collaboration in healthcare delivery through case studies and NHS expert guidance.

Help patients feel empowered and included in their healthcare journey

Marginalised groups often experience the greatest healthcare inequalities. This course will demonstrate how you can become an administrator and an advocate for these communities by adopting a primary-care-for-all mindset.

You’ll unpack how to address barriers to access and implement inclusive healthcare practices. Towards the end of this course, you’ll be ready to reflect on your role in the healthcare system and practically apply learned skills to improve patient experiences.

Become an impactful healthcare professional in the NHS system and beyond

By the end of this course, you’ll feel confident in engaging with people and communities to deliver impactful healthcare services. You’ll foster collaborative partnerships, enhance patient involvement, and effectively address health disparities, ensuring equitable healthcare delivery and patient satisfaction.


  • Week 1

    Partnering with people and communities at a primary care level

    • Making primary care work for everyone

      Explains main focal points of week 1 which are the purpose and value of involving people and communities in primary care; and why it's important to do it.

    • Why we involve people and communities

      Look at why we want to involve people, who those people are and what currently exists

    • Who we involve in Primary Care engagement

      Looking at who we involve.

    • How we involve people and communities

      Learners to read about different possible models for Patient Participation Groups, and the benefits and drawbacks to each.

    • End of Week 1

      Round up of what we have learned during the first week of the course.

  • Week 2

    Week 2: Making it real

    • Introduction to Week 2

      Introduces Week 2 of the course.

    • Understanding your community

      Find out how you can use data to help shape the discussions you have, and the people that you involve.

    • Facilitation

      You will explore how to facilitate a gathering to be at its best.

    • Putting what you've learned into practice

      Based on all the learning from the course, this activity is about thinking about how learners can put it into practice within their own context.

    • End of Week 2 - wrap up

      An end of the course list of resources for further reading.

When would you like to start?

Start straight away and join a global classroom of learners. If the course hasn’t started yet you’ll see the future date listed below.

  • Available now

Learning on this course

On every step of the course you can meet other learners, share your ideas and join in with active discussions in the comments.

What will you achieve?

By the end of the course, you‘ll be able to...

  • Explain the purpose of involving people and communities in primary care and what this can look like in practice
  • Explore what different models are out there for Public Participation Groups and how these models could be applied in practice
  • Identify the principles of involving people
  • Investigate how to diversify involvement
  • Explore how to involve most marginalised groups
  • Develop techniques to facilitate engagement effectively

Who is the course for?

This introductory course is designed for learners interested in learning more about holistic primary care strategies.

It’ll be particularly useful for those already working in healthcare, such as GP practitioners, and those involved in the NHS system.

People who work for NHS organisations are eligible for a fully-funded upgrade on this course.

A partnership between the NHS and FutureLearn means that NHS or social care staff and students can receive a fully-funded upgrade of this course. Check the eligibility criteria.

People who are members of a Patient Participation Group at a GP practice in England are also entitled to a fully-funded upgrade of this course. Please follow the link below, using your usual email address. After confirming your email address, select option 2 and when asked, please enter the name of the GP Practice as your organisation and then select eligibility group J.

To upgrade, please register via the NHS Leadership Academy Verify platform. If you have already registered on FutureLearn, please make sure you use the same email address when you use the Verify platform above.

Who will you learn with?

I work for NHS England in building communities, participation and engagement. My main interest is how we work with communities to improve health outcomes for everyone.

I work for the Public Participation Team at NHS England. Prior to this I have worked in community collaboration and engagement at Imperial College London and a range of NHS organisations.

Who developed the course?

NHS England

The Workforce, Training and Education (WT&E) directorate of NHS England (NHSE) ensures the NHS in England has a sufficient and inclusive workforce with the knowledge, skills, values and behaviours to deliver compassionate high-quality health and care to the people it serves.

Ways to learn

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$349.99 for one year

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$109/one-off payment


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Ways to learn

Choose the best way to learn for you!

Buy this course

$109/one-off payment

Fulfill your current learning need

  • Access to this course
  • Learn at your own pace
  • Discuss your learning in comments
  • Printed and digital certificate when you’re eligible

Subscribe & save

$349.99 for one year

Automatically renews

Develop skills to further your career

  • Access to this course
  • Access to 1,000+ courses
  • Learn at your own pace
  • Discuss your learning in comments
  • Digital certificate when you're eligible

Cancel for free anytime

Limited access


Sample the course materials

  • Access expires 4 Aug 2024

Find out more about certificates, Unlimited or buying a course (Upgrades)

Learning on FutureLearn

Your learning, your rules

  • Courses are split into weeks, activities, and steps to help you keep track of your learning
  • Learn through a mix of bite-sized videos, long- and short-form articles, audio, and practical activities
  • Stay motivated by using the Progress page to keep track of your step completion and assessment scores

Join a global classroom

  • Experience the power of social learning, and get inspired by an international network of learners
  • Share ideas with your peers and course educators on every step of the course
  • Join the conversation by reading, @ing, liking, bookmarking, and replying to comments from others

Map your progress

  • As you work through the course, use notifications and the Progress page to guide your learning
  • Whenever you’re ready, mark each step as complete, you’re in control
  • Complete 90% of course steps and all of the assessments to earn your certificate

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