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GPs get details of £50m clinical DES funding

By Nigel Praities

NHS Employers and the GPC have finally agreed how practices should be paid for providing a range of new enhanced clinical services for 2008/09.

The final form of the £50m clinical DESs was delayed by the protracted legal negotiations over the GP pay award.

Details of the five new clinical DESs are below:

1) Heart Failure DES - improving the treatment of heart failure and including incentives to provide beta-blockers to appropriate patients. Practices will get £35 per patient treated under this DES.

2) Alcohol DES - helping to reduce the risk of adults, aged 16 years or over, drinking at 'hazardous and harmful levels' defined by the World Health Organisation. Practices will get £2.33 for each new registered patient that has been screened.

3) Learning Disabilities DES - annual health checks for people on the local authority learning disability register. To participate in this DES, practices need to attend a multi professional education session run by their PCT. Practices will get £100 for every health check.

4) Osteoporosis DES - encouraging practices to diagnose and prescribe appropriate pharmacological secondary prevention for patients with osteoporosis. Payments will be based on three criteria covering diagnoses and treatment. The payment per average practice that meets all three criteria is £588.21

5) Ethnicity DES - rewarding practices for recording the ethnicity and first language of all the patients on their practice list. Practices will get 5.6p per registered patient

GPC chair Dr Laurence Buckman, previously revealed to Pulse that the clinical DESs would 'barely cover costs' and advised GPs to ‘look at the bottom line' before agreeing to them.

Dr Buckman said: ‘We are pleased that this guidance has been finalised so that GPs can plan how their practices are going to work with these new enhanced services.'

Andrew Clapperton, head of primary care contracting, NHS Employers, said: ‘This will allow Primary Care Trusts and general practices to finalise their plans for 2008/09 and put in place services that will benefit these patient groups.'

Dr Laurence Buckman: relieved details finally agreed Dr Laurence Buckman: relieved details finally agreed

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