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Lib Dems pledge to abolish MPIG

By Steve Nowottny

The Minimum Practice Income Guarantee should be abolished and the QOF prevalence formula reformed to help practices in deprived areas, the Liberal Democrats urged this week.

The radical plans to shake-up the GP contract come as part of the party's overall vision for the NHS. Other proposals include directly elected Health Boards to replace Primary Care Trusts, a patient contract with guarantees on waiting times and a £2 billion investment in elderly care.

The policy paper 'Empowerment Fairness and Quality in Health Care' welcomed Government plans to build new practices in underdoctored areas.

‘However, the GP contract also discriminates against practices in deprived communities,' it said. ‘This must be remedied.'

Launching the plans, new Lib Dem leader Nick Clegg said: ‘Sixty years after it was founded, the NHS is in desperate need of a new direction. The battle for extra investment has been largely won, but the service we are getting is simply not good enough.'

‘The question is not ‘how much', but ‘how we spend the money' so that everyone gets the healthcare they need.'

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