Practical Commissioning's Jargon Buster explains the meaning of the term 'Any willing provider'.
This is a procurement model.
The thinking behind the AWP model is that free choice of providers should not be constrained by commissioners and heavy-going expensive tendering processes.
Instead, under AWP patients should have a list of providers to choose from and their choices will ‘drive up quality through contestibility'.
So, the role of the PCT is to draw up the list of AWPs and to vet those who want to go on it, which includes ensuring they meet the national minimum quality criteria as set out by the previous Healthcare Commission since replaced by the Care Quality Commission.
There is no guarantee to the providers about how much work they will get as a result of being on the list.
Providers are paid either a locally agreed tariff or a price agreed in advance with the provider, but there is no guaranteed income.
The Government has instructed PCTs to adopt the AWP model when tendering for routine elective services and this applies to those developed through PBC. No tendering is required.