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Independents' Day

NI GPs waiting for their money

GPs in Northern Ireland are still waiting for pay arrears and seniority pay they were told they would get in December.

The fees and allowances, backdated to April 2003, were expected to be included in their December quarterly payment. GPs were told seniority payments would be made at the same time.

GPC Northern Ireland chair Dr Brian Dunn dismissed claims by the Northern Ireland Central Services Agency that seniority was delayed because around half of GPs had failed to return a form with details of the length of their NHS reckonable service. 'That doesn't explain why they haven't paid seniority to those 55 per cent or why pay arrears have not been made,' he said.

'GPs are getting quite frustrated. Their money is sitting in the agency's bank account rather than their own.'

He said the delay gave him little confidence in the smooth implementation of the new contract in Northern Ireland.

The agency promised to make seniority payments by the end of January, but for pay arrears only 'as soon as possible'.

Dr Dunn added: 'They didn't say which year, let alone which month.'

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