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Gold, incentives and meh

Home comforts

Editor’s blog

On Friday morning, we thought the news that Matt Hancock had approved the plans to pay GPs’ pensions taxes this winter was the biggest story of the month. But it turned out to be not even the biggest news of the hour.

Because at the LMCs Conference in London, leaders voted in favour of removing home visits from the GP contract, which dominated the news on Saturday.

Mr Hancock has already said that vulnerable housebound patients are still going to receive home visits. But this is muddying the issue – of course they are, and I have not heard anyone argue against this. The contentious part is who will be giving those home visits.

The contentious part is who will be giving those home visits

I might sound too optimistic here, but I feel this motion is the first step to a solution that will benefit all GPs.

I can see a situation in a few years’ time where our ‘manifesto’ pledge will come true, with health bodies commissioning services for home visits.

This would most likely involve practices within networks providing them – but with the option to opt out. This would retain visits for those who want to do them, and relieve pressure on those who don’t. It’s already happening in many parts of the country, after all.

Then again, what do I know?

Jaimie Kaffash is editor of Pulse. Follow him on Twitter @jkaffash or email him at editor@pulsetoday.co.uk

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