NHS England has given GPs another week to sign-up to the £55 ‘cash for diagnosis’ dementia scheme, Pulse can reveal.
The commissioner told Pulse the extension to 28 November was in response to requests from GPs and area teams and would give practices extra time ‘to evaluate their registers’, and ‘develop their plans’ to deliver the enhanced service.
The scheme, which will pay practices £55 for each additional dementia diagnosis if they show a net increase on the practice register from October to the end of March 2015, is an attempt by the Government to hit targets on dementia diagnoses rates in 2015 but has been widley condemned by GPs for being unethical.
A Pulse survey found 66% of GPs thought the scheme was unethical but many felt they couldn’t afford to turn down the scheme – and said it would not change their practise.
An NHS England spokesperson told Pulse: ‘In response to requests from a number of GP practices and area teams, we have extended the sign-up date to 28 November 2014.
‘GP practices are currently utilising the recommended toolkits to develop their achievement plans. This extension gives practices more time to evaluate their registers, and develop their plans to deliver the enhanced service and agree them with their area team.’