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PCT contract guilt

The scale of contract breaches attempted by PCTs over the past two years has been revealed.

A report on disputes between GPs and trusts that were

taken to national arbitration shows PCTs lost on 17 occ-asions.

Six of the cases examined by the Implementation Co-ordination Group ­ made up of the GPC, Department of Health and NHS Employers officials ­ related to improper badging of money for enhanced services.

A further three cases involved the rights of sessional GPs and another found in favour of a practice that had nursing home patients allocated across PCT borders

The disputes report has been circulated to trusts to 'aid

learning'.

Where PCTs got it wrong

· Enhanced services floor cannot be spent on uncontestable services such as 'Evercare' nursing models, same-day treatment centres, Saturday surgeries, minor surgery or prescribing incentive schemes

· PCTs cannot allocate nursing home patients across PCT borders

· PCTs cannot fix locum reimbursement at less than the maximum level in all cases

· PCTs must pay for DESs at or above the level specified in the Blue Book

· PCTs must consult on vacancies in singlehanded practices rather than take them on as PCTMS

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