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Ministers to decide fate of MPIG

By Joe Lepper

The future of MPIG will be decided by ministers based on a document written by NHS Employers, writes Joe Lepper.

The document has been submitted to the Department of Health and there will be no formal review with input from the GPC. The revelation has sparked fears that a decision on MPIG, expected next month, will be imposed on the profession.

With NHS Employers indicating there will be no extra funding, thousands of practices would lose substantial sums under the proposed global sum formula. A spokesperson said its report outlined 'the historical reasons for MPIG, its effect on equity and the fair distribution of resources and options for MPIG going forward'.

A spokesperson for the department said that as there was no formal review, there would be no review document. He added: 'NHS Employers has involved many stakeholders in this work, including GPs and other frontline NHS staff, so there can be no question that the profession has had a voice.'

Despite this, GPC chair Dr Hamish Meldrum insisted: 'This does not mean that discussion has ended on this. The MPIG was a guarantee in perpetuity and if they are going to impose any decision to do away with it that would renege on previous agreements.'

The GPC is already challenging the department's decision to cap pensions. Dr Meldrum said: 'We'd challenge any other decisions that we feel are breaking the original agreement.'

How worried are you?
• Are you concerned about the global sum formula and MPIG reviews?
• Could your practice lose out financially?
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