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GMS Contract 2015/16

Thursday 2nd Oct 2014 - Kate Hodkinson

Interesting news coming from NHS Employers who have reached agreement with the GP Committee of the BMA on changes to the GMS Contract for next year.

There are a mix of things which give an uncertain picture of the implications for practices – particularly on the financial side.

Two aspects of service delivery which have previously been paid for as Enhanced Services move into contractual obligations which are paid for by the Global Sum:

  • The Patient Participation DES will end and it will become a contractual obligation for all practices to have a PPG and to make this representative of the population.
  • The Alcohol Enhanced Services will also finish at the end of March 2014 and from 1st April 2015. It will be a requirement under the contract for practices to identify newly registered patients aged over 16 who are drinking alcohol at increased or high risk levels.

On the positive side, funding will remain for the Extended Hours and Learning Disabilities enhanced services. The Avoiding Unplanned Admissions enhanced service will also remain for the year although the payment structure will change as will the reporting requirements.

GP’s and practices will also acquire some other new areas of responsibility:

  • A named accountable GP for all patients who will co-ordinate care delivered under the contract
  • Practices will also have to publish average net earnings for Salaried GPs and Partners. This will start with this year’s earnings (2014/15) and it will have to be on the practice website by 31st March 2016

The issue of online access for patients will also be developed to include patients having online access to their medical records and enhanced availability of online appointments.

Changes to QOF for 2015/16 have also been announced. The value of a point will be adjusted however; there are no details at present of exactly how. We do know that the planned changes to the indicator thresholds will be deferred for the year but the discussions on clinical changes will continue and more information will be available as decisions are made.

At long last the Carr Hill Formula will be reviewed – let’s hope it works better next time!

Details of what has been announced so far can be found on the NHS Employers website.

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