This site is intended for health professionals only

GP contract funding fails to keep up with rise in DH spending

The growth in spending on GP contracts has not kept up with an overall increase in expenditure by the Department of Health.

The DH annual accounts for 2015/16, published yesterday, show that it spent £7.8bn on GMS, PMS and APMS contracts in 2015/16.

This was an increase of 1.5% on the year before but the department’s total revenue spend grew by 3.4% to £114.7bn during the same time period.

It comes as NHS England has allocated a smaller proportion of funds in this financial year – with general practice receiving only 7.23% of the NHS budget, down from last year’s share of 7.31%.

But NHS England promised in December that spending on GP and other primary care services ‘will grow in real terms at a higher rate than for other health services, with an extra 4%-5.4% cash funding every year for five years’.

It also announced as part of the GP Forward View that spending on general practice would increase by £2.4bn a year by 2020.

The Department of Health was criticised by the Public Accounts Committee yesterday for revealing its ‘poor finances’ on the day before Parliament rises for summer recess.

The accounts showed that trusts ended the year with a combined deficit of £2.45bn.