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Gold, incentives and meh

Working together on PMS contract

I read with interest your article on new PMS practice targets, 'Trusts force cost cuts on PMS GPs' (News, 7 September).

As chair of Reading PCT's Professional Executive Committee and a member of the team working with practices to introduce new targets, my experience has been one of working in partnership with our local PMS practices to achieve our aims with no budgetary squeeze looming over them.

Yes, we are negotiating new cervical cytology targets but practices that achieve them will be paid for doing so.

Our aim is to introduce the new targets next year not mid-way through this year. The PCT has been working with practices in recent months to

negotiate the contract, which, in our view, is a much better

approach than just imposing new targets.

I'm writing this following a meeting with practices to discuss PMS targets where we were able to discuss issues they had raised and agree a mutually acceptable way forward to resolve the few outstanding issues.

The PCT is committed to working with our primary care colleagues to improve services for patients and we can only do so within the mechanisms open to us. It is our job to

make sure that we do this in partnership with our local

practices, which is something we have been working hard

to do.

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