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NHS England is today welcoming changes to the national GP contract from April 2015.
The changes follow agreement between NHS Employers, on behalf of NHS England, and the BMA’s General Practitioners Committee (GPC).
Dame Barbara Hakin, National Director for Commissioning Operations at NHS England, said: “Having been a GP, I know how central primary care is to the health and wellbeing of patients and their carers. This continues to grow as more patients with complex health needs receive care in the community.
“Our vision is to see general practice play an even stronger role at the heart of local communities, offering more joined up and proactive care for patients. This is vital in addressing the rising demands on NHS services.
“Today’s contract changes recognise that and most importantly are aimed at improving care for patients.”
Alongside today’s GP contract announcement, NHS England is also announcing an update to its ongoing review of Personal Medical Services (PMS) contracts, which are locally negotiated GP contracts, covering around 40% of GP practices across the country.
The review of PMS contracts is due to be completed by April 2016. The aim being that every GP practice in the country should receive the same core funding for undertaking core work, and that any additional funding for additional services are agreed with local commissioners against a set of consistent principles and criteria.
NHS England has today announced that where the review highlights evidence that additional PMS funding is failing to deliver better care to patients, then this funding should be made available for reinvestment into general practice within the Clinical Commissioning Group area. The commissioning guidance advises that changes to funding should be paced over a minimum of four years (year one being 2014/15) to ensure a local services have time to adapt and develop.