Six GP practices have become the first NHS early adopter sites for the new public sector network in Wales.

The Public Sector Broadband Aggregation (PSBA) network will provide a single communications and information network for all areas of public service, including local government, health, education and the emergency services.

The health sector is the first in Wales to migrate to the PSBA and six practices from Merthyr Tydfil and Pontypridd were chosen to be the first early adopters.

Informing Healthcare, which is leading the switch to the new network in health, said several of the practices immediately reported a noticeable improvement in performance.

Health will be the largest new user of the network, with almost 1,000 communication circuits to switch across from the existing NHS network, including all of the 650 plus GP practices and hospital trusts.

In primary care, the aim is to ensure that each practice can be switched off the existing Digital All-Wales Network or dawn2 and onto the PSBA network within a single working day, at a rate of five GP practices a day.

The plan is for all health organisations to move across to the new network by the end of the financial year.

A spokesperson for the PSBA project said the network can better classify different applications and give them more appropriate relative priorities. This will enable NHS Wales to give improved priority to clinical applications over other, less-critical services.

They added: “In parallel we looking to rationalise our links to N3 and the internet to provide a more-rounded service overall to everyone.”

The PSBA network is designed to enable more effective and secure sharing of information across and between sectors and to promote more common approaches to service provision.

Last year the Welsh Assembly Government awarded a £74m seven year contract to Logicalis UK to provide the underlying network infrastructure.