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PPI prescribing by GPs fuels surge in rates of C. difficile

The query regarding the entitlement of a salaried doctor to sick pay should refer to the length of NHS service the prospective employee has (Financial, 15 October).

Since the employee is entitled to six months' full and six months' half-pay after five years of service under NHS Superannuation Scheme regulations, then the prospective employee might be seeking to confirm her entitlement based on pre-existing continuous service.

If she is coming from one job in which she has accumulated service in the NHSSS to another eligible job she will be entitled to continue her membership of the NHSSS.

It might seem unfair the practice, as a new employer, might have to pay out this amount, but it is the amount the doctor is entitled to.

The discrepancy regarding who pays (employing practice or PCT) is something that should have previously been taken up at national level with the PCTs, and I am not aware that it has been yet satisfactorily resolved.

The advice about salaried GPs' sick pay entitlement is misleading, as it does not clearly state whether sick pay is calculated from the date a salaried GP starts employment with a practice, or from the date they start employment with the NHS.

The model contract is clear on this issue: 'For the purposes of assessing the period of continuous employment the employment under this contract shall be deemed to have commenced on [xxxx] being the date on which the practitioner last commenced in NHS employment.'

Therefore under the model contract a salaried GP's sick pay entitlement should be calculated in relation to his or her length of continuous employment in the NHS, and not their length of continuous employment at the practice.

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