Dr David Geddes has had a tumultuous year. The GP face of primary care commissioning at NHS England, he was responsible for a rescue package for practices facing closure over the withdrawal of MPIG – a deal that was branded ‘a mockery’ by the GPC.
The deal saw just 15 out of 98 practices at immediate risk of closure offered additional funding. It meant that in one area the local CCG had to step in and provide funding for those not qualifying for the MPIG deal.
However, Dr Geddes has been prepared to defend his decisions. Attending a Pulse roundtable last year as part of Pulse’s Stop Practice Closures campaign, he took the long view, saying that it was co-commissioning better-integrated care that would result in funding shifts and general practice becoming more sustainable. But there are questions about whether NHS England’s approach will come in time to prevent significant numbers of practices closing around the country.
Dr Geddes says he has three main areas of focus over the coming year. ‘At the moment my main tasks include addressing issues arising as a consequence of rising GP indemnity costs, developing support packages for practices in difficulty and developing more accurate ways of measuring the quality of primary care services.’
He is still practising in north Yorkshire, is a fitness-to-practise medical panellist and trustee of The Hut, a mental health re-ablement charity in York.