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PCTs to save millions in QOF pay

QOF monitoring

PCTs plan to shave millions of pounds off GPs' quality framework earnings by implementing a tough new monitoring regime, writes Christian Duffin.

The clampdown will spell the end of 'high trust-low bureaucracy' QOF checks for thousands of GPs as trusts desperately try to claw back deficits.

Dr Barbara Hakin, chief executive of East Midlands PCT, has written to trusts in her region demanding they rigorously check GPs' performance.

Dr Hakin, who is also NHS Employers' lead negotiator on the GP contract, said: 'GPs know they deal with large sums of public money and are responsible for giving good value.'

But Chris Locke, chair of Nottinghamshire LMC said the move 'did not sound like high trust-low bureaucracy'. He said: 'It feels like they are saying "we will count every bean to make sure GPs do not defraud us".'

Cambridgeshire PCT has identified £300,000 of savings from tougher fraud checks.

Gloucestershire PCT has

earmarked £250,000 and a

large part of £1.4m of savings identified by Brent Teaching PCT in London will come from 'monitoring and reduction' of QOF payments.

Dr Hamish Meldrum, GPC chair, said GPs were weighed down by bureaucracy from QOF checks.

He said: 'We are aware of the problems PCTs face, but the main purpose of GPs is to look after patients, not provide PCTs with information that sits on shelves.'

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