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GP contract deal secures 1% pay uplift and no change to the QOF

GPs are set to receive a 1% pay uplift next year, as belated contract negotiations between the GPC and the Government have concluded.

The agreement on the 2016/17 contract in England includes increased investment of £220 million into the GP contract, a 3.2% total funding uplift, of which 1% has been calculated to the be pay uplift and 2.2% reimbursement to meet rising expenses facing practices such as indemnity fees, national insurance, employer superannuation increases and running expenses.

The Department of Health said this also includes £15 million that will cover the massive hike in CQC fees.

The deal will also see the end to the controversial dementia DES, that saw practices paid to screen for memory problems, with the resources transferred into core contractual funding.

In addition, the GPC said it has reached a ‘joint commitment’ with the Government to 'explore the end of the QOF’ - with no changes to the framework to be made this year.

The joint commitment also includes exploring an end to the avoiding unplanned admissions DES although this will still continue in 2016/17.

The GPC said the Government has also committed to ’a national strategy to reduce bureaucracy and manage demand on GP services’, and a 28% increase to the item of service fees for vaccinations and immunisations from £7.64 to £9.80.

However NHS England added that the deal will also see GPs required to:

  • record data on the availability of evening and weekend opening for routine appointments until 2020/21;
  • record annually the number of instances where a practice pays a locum doctor more than an indicative maximum rate, as set out by NHS England.

And the GPC stressed that the Government still has to come up with a ‘rescue’ deal for general practice.

GPC chair Dr Chaand Nagpaul said: 'The GPC was clear from the outset that these annual variations to the contract could not resuscitate general practice from the brink of collapse following years of underfunding, rising patient demand, staff shortages and unresourced work being moved from hospitals into the community.

’These limited changes provide some immediate financial support which for the first time in years recognises the expenses being incurred by practices and resources needed to deliver a pay uplift rather than a pay cut.

Dr Nagpaul further highlighted that there is 'no new clinical workload requirement or any change to QOF, and the deeply unpopular and imposed dementia DES will be removed with resources moving into core funding’.

But he added: ’However, these changes do not detract from GPC’s ultimatum to Government demanding a clear rescue plan to sustain general practice in the immediate and longer term. We now need to focus on the real battle to revive general practice and which will require far broader solutions than tweaking the annual contract.’

NHS England chief executive Simon Stevens said: 'Today’s welcome agreement between NHS England and the BMA provides GPs with some stability and support, and shows what can be achieved through sensible and constructive negotiation. However this contract is only one small element of a far wider package we’re jointly developing to help practices with workload, workforce and care redesign.

‘That will require radical new options, including further support for GP recruitment and return to practice, funding for additional primary care staff, new options for practice premises, a reduction in paper-based red tape, alternative approaches to indemnity cover, and redesigned out of hours, 111 and extended hours arrangements, to name just a few - all underpinned by much greater team working across individual practices.’

Health secretary Jeremy Hunt is expected to announce a GP rescue package before the end of February, that should ‘go further’ than the contract changes.

Commenting on the contract agreement, he said: 'GPs are the bedrock of the NHS and I am determined to provide the support they need so they can spend more time with patients. Today’s deal is just the start of significant new investment for general practice which will help GPs to provide a truly modern, efficient service every day of the week.'

What the 2016/17 contract deal includes

  • Increased investment of £220m (a 3.2% funding uplift) into the GP contract to deliver a 1% pay uplift and reimbursement to meet rising expenses facing practices, including higher CQC fees (£15m), practice upkeep and staffing costs.
  • An end to the dementia enhanced service with a transfer of resources to core funding.
  • No disruption for practices from annual contract changes, with no new clinical workload schemes or changes to the Quality and Outcomes Framework (QOF)
  • Joint commitment to explore the end of the QOF and “Avoiding Unplanned Admissions” enhanced service.
  • A commitment to a national strategy to reduce bureaucracy and manage demand on GP services.
  • A 28% increase to the vaccination and immunisation item of service fees from £7.64 to £9.80.
  • GP practices will be required to record data on the availability of evening and weekend opening for routine appointments, which is to be collected until 2020/21.
  • GP practices will record annually the number of instances where a practice pays a locum doctor more than an indicative maximum rate, as set out by NHS England.
  • The MenACWY 18 years will be extended to allow for the opportunistic vaccination of 19-25 year old non-freshers who self-present for vaccination.
  • NHS Employers and GPC will work with NHS England and the Department of Health to ensure that appropriate and meaningful data relating to patients’ named accountable GP is made available at practice level. This data will be shared internally within practices and used to improve services for patients.

Source: BMA and Department of Health

Related images

  • signing contract money sale

Readers' comments (56)

  • is that it?

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  • I thought we were beign offered 4% a few weeks ago ?

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  • That won't even pay for the increase in indemnity fees this year

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  • Expenses!
    Get all expenses reimbursed in full then we can start talking about rescue! 1% of not enough is not enough.

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  • wow!! We wouldn't know what to do with this truckload of extra cash!!!

    Agent Hunt to Rescue !!

    "I am determined ..... they can spend more time with patients." - Hunt.

    We can finally count on him to save the day!!

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  • GP practices won't even benefit from the 28% hike to imms and vacs as pharmacy will just cherry pick this!

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  • most be a total relief for GP Partners?

    Panic over and business as usual.

    Should help with recruitment and moral.

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  • How wonderful! General practice is saved! What a P take,

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  • Meanwhile I will raise my locum rates in line with inflation. Sucks to be a partner 😘

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  • May I remind that in real terms that's a funding decrease.

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  • I am with Dr Robert Koefman-I too thought that practice funding was going ti increase year on year by 4% ( announced in Pulse) or were we both having the same delusion at the same time?

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  • Like Dr Robert Koefman,I thought that practice funding would increase by 4% (announced in pulse) or did be both have the dame delusion?

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  • What's the standard locum rate set by NHS England?

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  • "deal...agreement...negotiations"
    it is hard to imagine that the gpc could have had less aspirations
    one wonders if they really consider they have achieved anything by getting out of bed in the morning
    clearly there are reasons mr hunt grants them a monopoly on negotiations
    before considering the hysteria of mass contractual resignation i would propose mass resignation from the bma

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  • "A commitment to a national strategy to reduce bureaucracy and manage demand on GP services."

    We fell for this in 2001 with Bliar's "Making a difference-Reducing GP Paperwork" scheme. If was totally ineffectual but it looks like we're going to fall for it again.

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  • Cobblers

    Private Business dealing with private locum and NHSE (aka HMG) want to set an indicative rate! If you want me to work as a locum then these are my rates take it or leave it. NHSE has no say.

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  • Vinci Ho

    .....shows what can be achieved through sensible and constructive negotiation.

    Taking the p*** on our young colleagues
    Harvey Dent , you sneaky *****rd

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  • A reminder to everyone that many years ago (about 18 I think) the free trade organisation deemed that the BMA setting of rates of locum pay were uncompetitive and therefore illegal

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  • Anonymous | Salaried GP19 Feb 2016 2:22pm

    But the cap on agency fees in the acute sector shows a govt can overule its own laws when it suits.

    For my practice this is a £10k increase in funding which will just about cover the impact of National Living wage cost increase on cleaning staff (about £500), the cost hikes from suppliers of NLW (£??) and the indemnity cost impact (26%, Looking at roughly £7.5k). In addition to this, we expect a CQC cost increase of some £1800 and ongoing ratchet of NHS pension costs.

    Not much change left JH.

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  • So would the total take home cover the cost of Locums, lost staff/redundancies, increased Indemnity and the CQC costs...and if not, can we refer back to NHS England to sort out a REAL package deal with the DoH ?

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  • the above comments illustrate that all is well and nothing will change i.e. bit of moaning but partners will cope.

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  • Dear All
    I sit on the GPC and took part in the debate yesterday. Happy to put head over parapet. Yes its peanuts, yes its not enough but would you have wanted us to turn it down and have nothing? Remember your NIC and CQC costs are going up whether or not you get a top for your expenses. Its a start. The onus is now on Mr Hunt to come up with his package that he always said would go beyond this agreement. And its due by the end of this month. Lets see what he comes up with.
    Regards
    Paul Cundy

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  • Thanks you paul very useful to know, would be great to hear more from the guys at the coalface so to speak as most of us feel that the governement will do as they wish just like they have with the junior doctors imposition

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  • Also happy as I was there yesterday to stand alongside Paul and GPC decision to take this for now, with all the reservations and comments he makes.

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  • There's a lot of this "let's be thankful for what we have got" going around. The same is going on in our CCG regarding the PMS premium - "be thankful for what you've got back and don't worry about the enormous workload associated with it"

    I will not be thankful until the GP budget is back up to a minimum of 12% of the NHS budget and neither should anyone at the GPC.

    Quite frankly, this headline has made me miserable. Any thers is a sinister side to it - recording of extended hours appointments and locum pay. Big brother is definitely watching over me.

    The "package" will be equally underwhelming.

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  • Vinci Ho

    All I would say is the battle is a long and sustained one. Staying or leaving is entirely a personal choice . Fighting the common enemy is the common goal....

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  • A commitment to a national strategy to reduce bureaucracy and manage demand on GP services.

    GP practices will be required to record data on the availability of evening and weekend opening for routine appointments, which is to be collected until 2020/21.

    GP practices will record annually the number of instances where a practice pays a locum doctor more than an indicative maximum rate, as set out by NHS England.

    Does no-one see the irony in the above - a commitment to reducing bureaucracy whilst announcing yet more bureaucracy. Typical.

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  • Indemnity increase of 8k and today's funding increase only 7.2k for a Practice with 4000 patient.
    Congratulations to all the LMC and GPC wizards who made this 'deal possible' Proud of you my dear leaders!

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  • Do the BMA / GPc think we are stupid??

    I am not sure how this equates to a 1% rise - the increase in indemnity fees alone will swallow the total amount.

    As for CQC - the roses are not justified. £5,000 for 1 visit?? They should be challenging this - it's 5k now wil me much higher next few years with no increased investment later on - should have been challenged now.

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  • fascinating
    in response to the negotiators comments
    you agreed
    you agreed despite clearly not being in agreement
    you agreed depite feeling it was bad for general practice
    you agreed though you must have known 100% of your colleagues would disagree
    and yet you still agreed in the certain knoledge your grassroots colleagues would continue to subscribe and fund you
    what is it like to feel that omnipotent? answerable to noone totally beyond reproach?

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  • Took Early Retirement

    Yes, the GPC should have had the guts to walk away.

    Partners will sit down to another bucket of faeces to eat.

    However, I personally do not care, having done the RLE thing. Currently on a few rainy days of walking in Cornwall.

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  • glad to see GPC is predictable as usual.

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  • Looking at our contract - you feel for the Juniors.

    "Junior doctors furious after new 'example' rotas show them working three weekends in a row"
    Check this out - independent 19.02.2016

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  • Negotiated agreement of poor terms and conditions is acceptance of these.

    Grassroots GPs and LMCs who the GPC supposedly represent have been very clear. The current situation cannot be fixed with peanuts.

    Better to have rejected the proposals outright than sign off on this.

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  • Just to say great to see more people posting under their true name as opposed to anonymously and very constructive to have negotiators such as Paul Cundy comment - thanks. Clearly this deal is still rather insulting but let's just see what the "new" contract offers..... This could be the make or break point for NHS General Practice - and I fear it may be a break point.... But in a market economy where demand is infinite and supply is limited there is an exit strategy.....

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  • In Jan 2016 - extract---
    NHS England chief executive Simon Stevens said in his report to today’s board meeting that ‘substantial funding and support’ will be provided to help reduce workload, improve workforce planning and redesign services.

    These guys say one thing and do another. Hunt promised wonderful streamlined workload- I see nothing. This man is deceit, hypocrisy, spin and trickery.

    sign the petition:
    https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/121152

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  • This prolongs the agony does it not and I am far from certain that it might not have been better to reject this?

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  • /How can the BMA agree this!!!! Am I reading this correctly That's the end of my membership with them.

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  • How can they agree to this. More reporting figures on ooh and locums = more beaurocracy. All time wastinh.
    Cash that doesn't cover increasing costs.
    How does this make me want to return to the uk or do aynthing other than locum if I did.

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  • GPC talks of battles. I am battle weary. I am gone and wish all the folks at the coal face = Do you need to stay ? Could you leave this utterly dismal GP land behind. Never mind the fall in pay. Litigation, GMC, CQC, Appraisal [ shortly by nurses], revalidation, do you have to stay?
    Is there an alternative to this abusive Contract and workloads?

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  • Leave before burnout totally overwhelms you.I am.Hunt is determined to destroy Doctors-consultants,juniors,GPs the lot

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  • Start with all indemnity costs will be met by DOH - include us under crown indemnity.

    All CQC costs, GMC as well, as well as appraisal will be met by DOH directly as well, so none of this well pay you peanuts and you can pass it on to them waste of time.

    CQC can then justify absurd fees to DOH.

    GMC spends more time protecting patients and persecuting doctors that it should be paid for by DOH, not doctors, to continue its current role.

    Then give us above inflation pay rise on top of that and its a start.

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  • Vinci Ho

    There's a fine line between extortion and negotiation.

    Bruce Wayne(Gotham)

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  • David Wrigley

    I was also at the GPC debate (as Lancs and Cumbria rep) and spoke very clearly in terms outlined above. General practice is on its knees and close to collapse. In fact it is collapsing in some parts of the country with practices closing, GPs walking away and recruitment nigh on impossible.
    The workload we now have is unsafe and unsustainable. My (fully staffed) practice has well over 100 same day triage calls to get though on a Monday with all other GPs doing routine surgeries. It is a crushing workload. The sheer volume we get through is unseen by our patients and misunderstood and ignored by our politicians. If my practice was A&E we would have been on black alert but we can't do that. This scenario is replicated across the country
    We need to take the fight to the politicians and we must let our patients (voters) know that we want the very best for them but with the current political defunding of the NHS the service is likely to grind to a halt.
    The 7 day mantra from Cameron and Hunt is a joke. We can't provide a safe 5 day service never mind a 7 day one.
    GPC has a role in highlighting all the above and we need to ramp this up. I will certainly be speaking out and saying this within and without the BMA and GPC.
    I think we all feel this way but we need to get the truth out there so everyone sees and understands the crisis in general practice

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  • Why don't all the Partners in one area get together, sign DATED resignations and call the government ????? Hmmmmmm lack of scrotal volume may be the answer....ex GP Partner (sick of moaning other GP Partners with no backbone) happy in Oz.

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  • Working as a locum at the moment, aged 51, waiting to see if GP Partnership or other longterm role interests me to jump back in..no way in H*ll with this kind of trivial vacillation. Please understand that the DoH doesn't want GMS in any form and has to walk the line of looking like it is helping, so that when we walk away it can be our fault in the eyes of the Media. Look at how they did this with NHS Dentistry. Message to BMA: please spend your efforts on positioning us well with the (Inter)National Corporates which is where we will end up. Yes, without this, we will all be in £50k pa 8-session contract drudgery for ever. GET ON WITH IT BMA! No more deckchairs, man the lifeboats. Please send a message to the SS Carpathia that we are coming, but at a premium. The Gong-seekers at the BMA know this already.. yes you do!

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  • @Sunil Bhalla; You can't end your membership of the LMC.
    It's family, ain't it?:)
    And you don't choose family (though you would have voted for one of those representing you)Feel bad about your choice of candidate? Don't vote for sweet talking scum bags next time.

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  • NEED TO GET RID OF CQC AND LET GPs GET ALONG WITH CLINICAL WORK

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  • When will GP's realise their so called 'rescue package' is a mere fantasy. It will never happen!

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  • @ Anonymous | GP Partner21 Feb 2016 12:15pm


    The GPC negotiated this, not the LMC.

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