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Gold, incentives and meh

PCT spends £700 per GP to meet the appraisals deadline

All GPs in one primary care trust will have undergone appraisal by the Government's March deadline, Pulse has learned.

Darlington PCT has buck-ed the national trend by investing £42,000 in the scheme. It expects to have appraised its 66 GPs by April, even though it only started appraisals in December.

Under the scheme, appraisers are paid £400 and GPs being appraised £300. It stands in stark contract to most trusts which are not even close to meeting the target.

A snapshot survey by Pulse last week found no other trusts would complete appraisals by March 31.

LMCs have warned GPs to boycott schemes that have not been funded by PCTs and to ignore threats that the appraisal is vital for their revalidation folder.

GP Dr Ahmet Fuat, clinical governance lead for Darlington PCT, said GPs had been more enthusiastic about the process because the trust had funded it properly. One nine-partner practice, including two appraisers, had all been appraised in a single day.

'PCTs need to have a well-developed format that GPs know well and for every practice to have at least one nominated appraiser,' he added.

Meanwhile, other PCTs have been forced to put back their appraisals deadline.

South East Sheffield PCT said it would only have appraised six or seven out of its 125 GPs by the end of March. Dr Trefor Roscoe, a GP and an appraiser in Sheffield, said it was now aiming to appraise all principals and non-principals by the end of March 2004.

Exeter PCT said its eight appraisers would have appraised around 50 of 83 principals by the end of March this year.

Clinical governance lead Dr Nick Bradley said the trust had agreed a target with GPs to complete appraisals by the end of August.

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