Bodies created to take over control of primary health services from local health authorities. The trusts are made up of GP s and other healthcare professionals. For more on National Health Service structures go to http:// www.nhs.uk/thenhsexplained/how_the_nhs_works.asp For definitions of other NHS terms go to http:// www.nhs.uk/thenhsexplained/glossary.asp
A Primary Care Trust is a free-standing statutory body which is responsible for delivering health care to the local population through GPs, community nursing staff and other primary care staff. The key functions of a PCT are to improve the health of, and address health inequalities in, the community; to develop primary care and community services across the Trust's area; progressively take on the commissioning of hospital services for patients within the Trust's area, to meet patients' needs appropriately; to directly provide Community Hospital and Community Health services.
A body providing primary healthcare (doctors, dentists, etc.) and community health care (nursing and occupational therapy services, etc.) in a locality, accountable to the Health Authority