The NHS Commissioning Board has rejected a ‘fair shares’ allocation for individual CCG funding based on disease burden and instead awarded a 2.3% uplift across the board for CCGs on their share of PCT allocations from the previous year.
The decision means that two CCGs in southern England have the highest funding allocation this year, although the Board said that it will be cinducting an ‘urgent review’ into the way CCG allocations work.
North, East, West Devon CCG and Dorset CCG have been awarded the highest allocations for 2013/14 with £1,060,184 and £896,682 respectively. Overall, CCGs were collectively awarded £63,355,299 budget for their first year.
The NHS Commissioning Board rejected the ‘fair shares’ recommendation by the Advisory Committee on Resource Allocation, which it had tasked to look into the number of patients registered at each practice and used diagnosed conditions to assess overall needs of the population.
Instead, the Board decided to award 2.3% uplift across the board for CCGs on their share of PCT allocations from the previous year.
The Board said ACRA’s formula accurately predicted the future spending requirements of CCGs ‘based on the pattern of need’, but that it would redistribute funding to areas that have the best health outcomes, compared with the worst.
However, it added: ‘This appears inconsistent with the NHS Commissioning Board’s public purpose to improve health outcomes for all patients and citizens and reduce health inequalities.
‘It will therefore conduct an urgent, fundamental review of the approach to allocations, drawing on the expert advice of ACRA and involving all partners whose functions impact on outcomes and inequalities. It will be completed in time for initial conclusions to inform 2014/15 allocations.’
Dr David Jenner, a senior policy adviser at the NHS Alliance and a GP in Cullompton, Devon, said the Board was mistaken for rejecting ACRA’s recommendations.
He said: ‘I don’t understand why they dropped the formula. They applied a 2.3% uplift without using a funding formula. Which strikes me as a very different approach to the one regarding GMS and PMS contracts. I don’t quite follow the logic of doing that while deciding on moving GP contracts to “fair share”.
‘My initial analysis is that this is political, to avoid there being obvious losers in the first year of CCGs.’