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NHS managers fund £10m uplift for improving general practice IT

General practice will receive an additional £10 million in capital funding to help upgrade and replace practice computers systems, NHS England announced today.

Published today, NHS England’s ‘Securing excellence in GP IT services’ report for 2014/16 says the £230m IT budget – an increase of £10m on last year – will be handed directly to CCGs for the first time, and that allocations will be weighted for population size.

The bulk of the funding – £140m – is for revenue costs, such as day-to-day operation and back-office support staff, but NHS England has increased the capital allocation to £66m, which could be used to replace computers running the soon-to-be-unsupported operating system, Windows XP.

This money is distinct from the central GP Systems of Choice funding, which pays for clinical IT systems and will allow commissioners to select locally appropriate ‘add-on’ IT services, as well as paying core costs.

Tracey Grainger, programme head of primary care IT at NHS England, said: ‘These arrangements will continue to give general practice providers a choice of high quality clinical IT systems that are tailored to local requirements while enabling the flexibility and innovation we recognise the service needs.’

‘This is underpinned by an on-going commitment from NHS England to continue to support and encourage the development of a world class IT infrastructure across health and care.’