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Independents' Day

NHS England to look into GP practice which set up private side clinic

NHS England is going to take 'a hard look' at NHS GP practices which also offer private appointments, its chief executive has said.

Speaking at today's meeting of the NHS England board, held in public, Simon Stevens addressed reports on Dorset GPs offering charged-for appointments.

As Pulse reported earlier this week, partners at the Poole Road Medical Centre in Bournemouth have set up the Dorset Private GP service, which charges £80-145 for appointments.

NHS GP practices cannot charge their patients for services, and the GP practice clarifies that its private arm does not currently accept patients who are on its NHS practice list.

Mr Stevens said: 'There have been reports this week of a practice in Dorset proposing to start offering private charged for appointments alongside its NHS appointments.

'I think we want to be absolutely clear that it is not permissible for a practice to charge its own registered patients, and even the circumstances that have been described here look questionable.

'So we're going to take a very very hard look, as NHS England, at anybody proposing that kind of approach.'

The Dorset GPs said on their website that 'sadly at current times the NHS restricts us from treating our own patients for GP services, but this may change soon so please keep in touch'.

Readers' comments (20)

  • Once opened you cannot close Pandoras box Simon

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  • National Hopeless Service

    A long hard look at their website will suffice....

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  • NHS England "ain't 'appy" so like some Eastenders character they want "a word in the shell of Poole road Med'ickle gaff...

    My answer to them.... \/...that's right V for Victory, of course.

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  • whats questionable?

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  • NHSE bosses won't be able to digest a GP earning an hourly rate nearly equal to theirs, they'll aim to crucify this Group for heresy:)

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  • I know many GP practices already doing this. If there is more than one GP practice in a health centre, and if they are able to work together, they can see each other's patients on a private basis. It is just because there was a lot of negative publicity in the national media, making out that this was the beginning of the end for NHS GPs... Mind you the media may be correct. That's why Simon does not like it.

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  • Isn't this a bit of a non-story? Poole and Sandbanks are stuffed full of non-doms who are not entitled to full NHS care and very used to going privately. This surgery will be in competition with several other in the area who offer similar arrangements.

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  • NHSE will need to be careful. If they make it harder for these doctors to combine NHS and private work, they may find it is the NHS work which is abandoned, not the private work!

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  • Time to put a full stop to hypocrisy. Someone who has been brought in by Cameron to privatize the NHS by JH's side and has done everything to wreck primary care, now suddenly transforms into a saviour of NHS. Your deeds tell a different story and explanation is not accepted.

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  • Dear All,
    They are perfectly entitled to do what they are doing.
    Paul C

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