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Most PCTs claim to conform with NICE standards of care

The vast majority of PCTs have told the Healthcare Commission they conform to NICE technology appraisals, despite evidence to the contrary.

In self-assessment of wheth-er they met official minimum standards of care, more than 80 per cent of 303 trusts claimed they were implementing the appraisals.

But a recent Pulse survey showed GPs could not implement the NICE appraisal on statins because only one PCT in 20 would pay for measurement of cardiovascular risk.

And GP experts said a 'whole raft' of other NICE guidance was also under threat from a lack of funding, despite a legal obligation for PCTs to fund the implementation of technology appraisals.

Dr Richard Vautrey, GPC negotiator and a GP in Leeds, said: 'The cardiovascular risk assessment was a case in point and it applies to other guidance too.'

In the commission's first assessment of core standards of care, only 54 PCTs admitted non-compliance to NICE technology appraisals.

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