Why I'm deeply suspicious of contract's pension deal
I refer to the news story on GP pensions (March 3). Our pensions are currently earned on the basis of income, to a set formula of fees earned. This is reasonably predictable and is not related to practice profit.
If a practice chooses to spend more than the average built in for expenses then only current income is affected, not pension. In the proposed contract the pension will be related to net profit.
This means practices that invest in quality and have higher-than-average expenses (effectively subsidising the NHS as always) will not only suffer a reduction in current income but also in future pensions. The extent of this will be unpredictable and will represent a continued failure of the GP remuneration system to reward those who spend more to provide a better service to patients.
The GP providing poor facilities will continue to drive to the bank in the Mercedes to deposit the profit, and even more now, to look forward to an enhanced pension in retirement.
The 25 per cent uplift in pension will not be achieved by all on the basis of increased profits, never mind the increase in pay.
For that reason I am deeply suspicious of the pensions deal in the proposed contract.
Dr CDE Morris