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The BMA is failing PMS practices

As a partner at a large PMS practice, I am writing to express my dismay not only at Northumberland Care Trust's plans to cut our PMS budget, but also the BMA's failure to support us and neighbouring practices during the negotiating process.

Following the trust's decision to renegotiate our PMS contract we are facing a budget cut of 8% in the first year, increasing to 12% the following year. Currently, it is not clear if further budget cuts will be imposed on us over subsequent years. We have invested significant funds in practice development over the last three years. These cuts will prevent any such investment in the future and are certain to restrict the level of service we can provide to our patients.

Despite the glaring economic reality facing us, the BMA has made it clear it has no intention of supporting us. It has become increasingly evident that the BMA views such drastic budget cuts as an acceptable outcome for all PMS practices. The BMA does not appear to feel the situation warrants any change from its current stance, despite the obvious and profound implications for general practice across our county.

We would urge the BMA to listen to its members and work alongside them to prevent catastrophic change to primary care in Northumberland.

From Dr Adrian Jefferies, Blyth Valley, Northumberland

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