The bulk of savings from real budgets would have to be reinvested into the NHS say the Conservatives.
In a recent interview with Pulse, Practical Commissioning’s sister paper, shadow health minister Mark Simmonds pledged real budgets and ‘real cash’ for primary care commissioners but added: ‘the vast bulk of that (savings) will have to be reinvested into frontline care’.
Mr Simmonds also said GPs could not expect to commission services from themselves and that PCTs would act as referees.
‘There will be an ongoing role for the PCT to ensure the most efficient and effective provider is actually providing the service’ he said.
The enhanced commissioning role for GPs, including the possibility of commissioning out of hours care, would require a new GP contract he said.
Mr Simmonds also distanced his party from making the NHS the ‘preferred provider’ and pledged to open up the health service to more competition from the private sector.
‘You’ve got to have an element of competition in the system, as it drives efficiencies, as long as you have benchmarkable[sic] information.’