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GP cover will be required for extended hours appointments, Network DES confirms

GP cover will be required for extended hours appointments, Network DES confirms

A GP will be required to cover all enhanced access shifts offered by primary care networks, NHS England has confirmed today.

The Network DES has been published today, and it sets out the requirements for PCNs to provide enhanced service access from 6:30pm to 8pm on weekdays and 9am to 5pm on Saturdays.

The DES also sets out the new service requirements of anticipatory care and personalised care, the new funding available through the investment and impact fund and requirements around CVD and cancer care.

But the biggest change to the DES involves the requirements for enhanced access, many of which have been trailed.  

Under the requirements, networks will have to provide 60 minutes’ worth of appointments per 1,000 population within the network, and these will have to be delivered within the hours stipulated – but they won’t have to cover the whole periods.

The service will go live in October, when it will be funded £7.46 per patient pro rata. Until then, networks will receive 72p per patient for the preparatory arrangements.

The DES says: ‘A PCN must ensure GP cover during the Network Standard Hours providing in person face-to-face consultations, remote consultations, leadership, clinical oversight and supervision of the MDT.’

It also confirms that PCNs will have to get plans to commissioners by 31 July, which will set out the mix of services to be provided, how networks will offer appropriate levels of face-to-face appointments and what locations are to be used.

The appointments will be available ‘for any general practice services and services pursuant to the Network Contract DES that are provided to patients, the DES says. It also says that they should be bookable a minimum of two weeks in advance, and that same day appointments should be made available.

More to follow



Please note, only GPs are permitted to add comments to articles

David Turner 1 April, 2022 12:11 pm

I suppose it is the 1st April

Patrufini Duffy 1 April, 2022 12:17 pm

No big deal. You cancel the Monday clinic / salaried / locum – reallocate to Saturday or evening. And the big boys win the dollar. And the access is the same, or worse in fact. Nice plan for the big superpractice PCN.

Kosta MANIS 1 April, 2022 12:30 pm

David Turner’s comment is probably the best I have ever seen in Pulse.
It tells us succinctly what NHSE’s assessment of the average GP IQ is.

Finola ONeill 1 April, 2022 3:17 pm

Peeps ready to ditch the old PCN DES yet?

David Jarvis 1 April, 2022 3:40 pm

I feel a bit thick here but this is loss making offer of money for a service. Why can we not decline said money? If they say they will stop all the rest of the PCN money unless we take on this loss making service they insist we deliver then we are into indentured servitude forced labour or slavery surely. So a polite thanks for the offer but I’d rather go and walk my dogs on Saturday seems the correct repsonse to this. If they insist on forcing this then my first act will be to resign from doing any OOH’s work that I currently do and they struggle to staff.

Dylan Summers 1 April, 2022 4:53 pm

@David Jarvis

Don’t be silly. They wouldn’t be so foolish as to mandate routine Saturday working without considering the impact on OOH staffing, would they?

Would they?

Would they???

Slobber Dog 2 April, 2022 4:09 pm

I suppose it depends on how ‘cover’ is defined.

Abhijit Ganguly 2 April, 2022 10:55 pm

Hi David Turner,
This is the NHS -everyday is the 1st of April .in “la la land”- NHSE is always the King. we are all “greater fools”.

Abhijit Ganguly 3 April, 2022 8:30 am

Hmmm, I have an idea! Why not call the enhanced access shifts-” cheese and wine”appointments?