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Government blanks Lords' request for salaried GP review

General practice makes an ‘incredibly positive and fundamental contribution’ to the NHS, according to the Department of Health and Social Care.

This was its response to a House of Lords select committee report into the long-term sustainability of the service, launched last April.

The committee had said the traditional model of general practice is 'no longer fit for purpose' and the Government should explore a future where GPs are under its 'direct employment'.

But the response from the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) failed to directly respond to the specific suggestion.

The DHSC instead said that it was ‘exploring’ how general practice can move to new models, in cooperation with NHS England and the profession, and as highlighted in the GP Forward View.

It said ‘two really positive examples’ of such new models were the MCP and PACS models for integrating specialist and community care.

The DHSC said: ‘The Government recognises the incredibly positive and fundamental contribution that general practice makes within the NHS, including the significant benefits to local communities that GP practices across the country provide.’

The committee’s report had criticised successive governments for failure to plan to sustain the NHS in the long term, requesting that an 'Office for Health and Care Sustainability' was established to look 15-20 years into the future.

But the DHSC said: ‘The Government is deeply committed to the long-term sustainability of the NHS and has put in place steps to ensure the health and care system is well placed to prepare for the future.’

The Lords committee had also asked the Government to review its stance on NHS pay restraint and its effect on morale and retention.

To which the DHSC said it had now liftd the ‘across-the-board 1% public sector pay policy’, adding that it ‘recognises that for some public sector workforces greater pay flexibility in return for improved productivity may be needed to address recruitment and retention problems’.

In January the Department of Health and Social Care indicated there could be some ‘flexibility’ around the 1% pay rise for public sector workers.

The BMA has asked for GPs to receive a pay uplift in line with the retail price index plus 2% in 2018/19.

The Lords committee had also suggested the Department of Health should become the 'Department of Health and Care', a recommendation upheld in the Prime Minister's latest cabinet reshuffle.

Readers' comments (8)

  • AlanAlmond

    The House of Lords select committee, these people are being paid out of taxation to come up with utter crap.

    ‘No longer fit for purpose’ Yup that pretty much sums up the house of Lords

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  • Just Your Average Joe

    Scrap the house of Lords and redirect funding to social care for elderly to free hospital beds and the whole system would start to move and ease hospital bed crisis.

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  • Just Your Average Joe

    No chance entitled elite would remove their mouths from the trough - and turn their back on their free lunches and money fountains.

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  • Government will never make GP service completely salaried under their direct control, because they know GP Partnership delivers same service at much lower cost. If all GPs go salaried and work as per their contracted hours then they will need lot more salaried GP to do the same work.

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  • Spot on Pradeep.

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  • Council of Despair

    but it does show their intentions i.e. at some point in the future the service will be salaried.

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  • The government wants control of professionals down to the microscopic level. What you can prescribe, refer or what sutures you use. Even a plumber has more freedom in the choice of wrenches to use. This is bad for patients and doctors.

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  • David Banner

    The DOH slowly strangle partnerships to the point of collapse, with the hidden agenda of an all salaried service, but are desperate the public aren’t informed.
    The Lords see the crisis coming, and suggest that the DOH consider an all salaried service to save Primary Care.
    The DOH, struggling to keep a straight face, reply that they are fully supporting partnerships.
    GP partners attack the Lords for their suggestion, leaving the DOH off the hook.
    And so the great GMS partnership purge continues, in silence, and off the front pages.
    Jeremy plays another blinder.

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