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Accountants cautious on GP contract changes

GPs are unlikely to see an increase in income as a result of the changes laid out in the 2014 GP contract deal, accountants have claimed

Medical accountants told Pulse the agreement would be likely to alleviate many of the burdens on GPs, and had been universally welcomed by their GP clients, but warned that an increase in pay would not necessarily follow given there is no new funding.

They also expressed concern about how PMS contract holders would fare given a significant amount of money will be shifted into the global sum.

Bob Senior, chair of the Association of Independent Specialist Medical Accountants (AISMA) and head of medical services at Baker Tilly, said: ‘Any way you cut it, I don’t see how there is fresh money going into practices. It is recirculated and they are doing different things for it. But I cannot see how there is any increase in funding so practices will see any extra finances.’

Debbie Wood, a partner at Moore & Smalley accountants and deputy chair of AISMA, said the deal as a whole was a good one for GPs.

She said: ‘Overall, practitioners will feel that the reduction in box-ticking is a good thing in helping them manage their workload and the patient demand issues.’

But she added: ‘If you look at the detail, any funding that is available is being redirected, so it is not new funding. It appears to be that they are taking funding attached to QOF points, and reallocating that to the funding available to the practice as a whole. It is difficult to see there will be any new funding.’

Sarah Moss, head of medical services at BDO, said she was ‘concerned’about how it will affect GP pay.

‘It could reduce incom,’ she said. ‘There is this new enhanced service, which will reduce A&E admissions. But in order to do this, they are pulling points out of QOF… there is concern they will still have to do the measures in QOF, but there will be more work to do with this new enhanced service.’

There were also implications for PMS practices, Deborah Wood said.

She said: ‘We are also talking about the GMS contracts, but this will affect the PMS contract too with how the allocation is moved. They have to be on the ball to ensure they don’t lose out – for example, the reinvestment of the seniority payments and so on.’

Readers' comments (6)

  • if money is ploughed in to globalsome than those who receive large correction factor will have no benefit but will loose 1/7th of correction factor?

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  • Above is a key concern and needs clarification. I was pleased to read the following on BMA website:

    "All funding being transferred into core funding will not be subject to the 6% Out of Hours Deduction. All practices, including those with correction factor, will receive funding transferred into core funding."

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  • Sarah Wood is right.
    There is no new money and, in order to earn back some of the money,it will be necessary to perform the new DES to cut hospital admissions. It is not clear that practices will necessarily achieve this and income might drop even with the increased work. This DES income can also be removed in future years if it is not successful.

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  • Can we get a vote please?

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  • I know I am being cynical yet again but I think once more G.P.s are being shafted. They inflicted on us the unacceptable and they now pretend that removing some of it is a gift. How naive can our representatives be. Yes there are a very few improvements, but at a price not yet fully understood. Medical accountants appear to have more understanding of what is going on than our professional representatives, Sad.

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  • We won't fully know until we start getting anonymous payments next year from the global sum. It's ridiculous how they're cutting area team funding for departments that pay us! It's only going to get worse!

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