For those of us who are familiar of DoH documents and publications (LMC members, for instance) , the choice of words are always careful with even encryption sometimes.
Read this document through , you might find more questions than answers:
(1) 'State-backed' is clearly not crown , the word we preferred instead. My preliminary understanding is that we will still have to pay a fee from our pocket but the amount as well as any future increase , is under the scrutiny of the government. Then again , 12-18 months before the state can accomplish this 'backing' is rather mysterious.
The practical question is , 'does DoH have an estimation of how much money is actually involved?'
(2) My gut feeling sensed something strange when MDU announced a 50% reduction of current subscription fee almost simultaneously when the health secretary made his announcement. Call me a conspiracy theorist . Clearly, there is some variation in terms of how much different medical defence organisations have been charging their members . Also , more than half of our subscriptions to MDOs are for covering litigation related issues. So if this stated-backed indemnity is solely litigation related , one can probably work out how much we should pay for the coverage of non-litigation processes.
(3) This announcement cannot stop one from drawing implications from the overall political big picture. The Chancellor got himself caught in lines of fire as far as his party's civil war is concerned. Deep down , he is refusing to put billions of domestic money(for health and education) aside for a possible 'no deal' outcome of Brexit negotiations with EU. But he is under intense pressure from some backbenchers to do so. Hence , I am not 100% convinced about this scheme without a statement from the treasury office. If this is a new money , one should expect some mentioning in the next Chancellor's budget announcement.
(4) Based on the original argument that high indemnity fee is one big obstacle that is hindering recruitment and retention, particularly in out of hours , the impact of this scheme has to be positive to deem itself as one solution to our crisis.
Clearly , 12-18 months will take the time up to late 2019 , how can one ensure this scheme can help the government reaching the target of 5000 more GPs by 2020. We need to see this money now.
Well ,one thing is for sure , the time will have passed the deadline of Brexit on 31/3/2019. If you are a strong believer of Boris , there will be £350 million more per week for NHS .
(5) Only GPs in England can benefit so far , why? The typical technocratic answer in the document was that it would be down to individual devolved administration in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland . Aren't we talking about a crisis for all UK GPs?
The rumour was the prime minister would have a cabinet reshuffle soon . I am afraid once again ,one day of politics is too long .
Watch the space , folks .