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CAMHS won't see you now

PCT's half-pay locum move is banned

GPs have criticised final Government guidance on practice-based commissioning for failing to clear up major questions over the scheme.

The technical guidance confirms that Choose and Book will be mandatory for all practices that take on commissioning.

It also stated that GPs will be able to spend any savings on premises and equipment, subject to nine conditions to be assessed by PCTs.

But GPs said the guidance failed to address concerns over inadequate hospital discharge information and problems with Payment by Results.

Dr Hamish Meldrum, GPC chair, said: 'This long-awaited technical guidance is neither technical nor does it give much guidance.'

He added that linking the scheme to Choose and Book would act as a 'deterrent'.

Dr David Jenner, a GP in Cullompton, Devon, and PEC chair lead for the NHS Alliance, said the guidance 'left a lot to local decisions'.

He added: 'It doesn't help where practices or PCTs are not keen or don't get on.'

Dr James Kingsland, chair of the National Association of Primary Care and a GP in Liverpool, said: 'Our biggest success is that it has now come to fruition in a way that's about devolving full budgets so practices can make full changes.'

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