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Practice launches new campaign to stave off closure

Another inner-city GP practice facing closure because of MPIG withdrawal has launched a campaign to highlight how the withdrawal is disproportionately affecting practices serving the most deprived populations.

The Devonshire Green & Hanover Medical Centres in Sheffield has launched the campaign after calculating it is due to lose as much as £140,000 due to its large proportion of patients with mental health problems and patients who often don’t speak English as a first language.

It follows the campaign led by Jubilee Street Practice in east London, which succeeded in securing a reprieve in the withdrawal of MPIG payments for some practices.

Devonshire Green & Hanover Medical Centres partner Dr Graham Pettinger told Pulse the practice would be launching a petition for patients and supporters and patients on 26 January, having already received support from local MP Paul Blomfield.

The practice has also won concessions from the area team, CCG and local public health teams, who have all agreed to fund a short-term independent study looking in detail at the work load and patient demographics that make the practice so MPIG dependent.

Writing in Pulse, Dr Pettinger said he hopes the study will be used to show exactly how damaging the withdrawal will be, but added:‘They understand that we are not a failing practice, but have survived until now in a difficult financial situation by dedication and careful use of resources. They also accept that they would face very difficult decisions about providing care to our patients if the practice were to close.’

‘However, at present the area teams have no power to make locally flexible decisions, and the CCGs do not have a remit to vary our contract.’

This comes after Pulse revealed NHS England had sat down with other MPIG-affected practices in London after they highlighted evidence which, they believe, shows NHS England has seriously underestimated the impact of cuts.

Readers' comments (6)

  • Vinci Ho

    '...underestimated.....' , so polite
    Replace that with
    Ignore
    Neglect
    Can't be asked
    Take a p**s

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  • Yes, 'seriously understimated' - polite indeed. Should have added -' underestimated.. level of own ignorance, incapability and arrogance'.

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  • Dr Pettinger, we have a pack we can send you on our data (we have permission as anonymised) which you may find useful. 32 practices in Tower Hamlets shared data regarding practice income (I know- amazing and astonishingly powerful) and that, combined with the CEG's data on consultation rates across the population (see BMJ) was the evidence we presented to NHSE.
    Greatly encouraged by your campaign. Everyone told us this was impossile a year ago and look where we are now! You can do the same and so can others. We have to get NHSE and the government to start listening to evidence. We have 2 massively powerful levers- the patients and the evidence and you are glavanising both. Well done!! Now - what about you others?? NHSE has done a large pievce of miscalculation in our opinion. What makes you think you will be OK?

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  • Vinci Ho

    Well said , Naomi

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  • Well Naomi, that was a great job. In Medway, any information you need about Practice incomes has to come through FOI requests and that too may be a vain attempt. I wonder whether we could mobilize and share information openly on our patch someday.
    Heartening to know the GP Community is more open elsewhere.

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  • Don't let the government and NHSE think MPIG has gone away - We mustn't let nearly 100 practices close, affecting 700,000 patients. Find out how badly you will be affected (many practices still unsure) and shout about it... or should we just die quietly? Well WE'RE not on THAT pathway just yet..!

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