GP practices will be paid the £12.58 fee for administering only one dose of Covid vaccine under the new DES in ‘exceptional circumstances’, NHS England has said.
This includes if the patient has chosen not to have the second dose, or not responded to offers of the second dose.
The clarification comes after GPs had expressed concern over wording in the draft DES plans that suggested practices would only get paid upon completing a course of two doses.
But the full DES specification, published yesterday, lists a number of ‘exceptional circumstances’ under which practices can still get paid for administering the first dose.
The document said: ‘The Item of Service fee will be paid on completion of the final dose (i.e. £25.16 if the vaccination requires two doses) unless in exceptional circumstances the final dose cannot be administered, eg because of intolerance/clinical agreement.’
It lists the full list of exceptional circumstances where GPs can still get paid if they do not deliver the final dose as:
(a) unsuitability for the patient:
(i) because of medicine intolerance or allergy discovered during administration of the first dose
(ii) if the patient has commenced end of life care before a second dose of the vaccine could be provided
(iii) if the patient has died before a second dose could be provided.
(b) the patient has chosen not to receive the second dose of the vaccine following a shared decision making conversation
(c) the patient did not respond to offers of receiving a second dose of the vaccine
(d) if the patient has moved out of the area covered by the PCN grouping (see below);
(e) if the patient has moved in to the area covered by the PCN grouping after receiving the first dose of the vaccine from another provider.
It is thought that the two Covid vaccines most likely to be rolled out first as part of the UK vaccination campaign both require two doses, although this is yet to be confirmed.
The DES specification has also revealed that GP practices will have to administer the Covid vaccine to care home residents and staff, as well as to housebound patients through home visits.