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Major changes to the Carr-Hill formula will not be made unless their impact can be modelled before Christmas, the chair of the formula review group has warned.

Philip Grant said he shared GPC negotiators' concerns over the tight timescale for the review, which could mean there is not enough time to push through radical change.

GPs want new factors including diseconomies of scale, deprivation and ethnicity to make the formula more fair.

Mr Grant, director of finance at Selby and York PCT, said most changes were likely to be 'evolutionary, not revolutionary'.

All parties, he said, wanted to reduce the reliance on MPIG because it 'negated the equitable distributive effect of Carr-Hill'.

If a 'fundamental piece of research' affecting the formula was only produced at the last minute, it may not be possible to make changes based on it, Mr Grant added.

'We've got to agree a work plan which takes into account a period of time for data capture, research, modelling and software creation.'

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