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Patients to meet minister as PMS practice’s cuts appeal rejected



Patients of a practice set to lose £550,000 in PMS contractual funding have secured a meeting with a health minister.

The meeting will come as health secretary Jeremy Hunt has rejected a formal appeal made by the practice based in King’s Lynn in Norfolk.

A patient group representative will accompany local MP Sir Henry Bellingham to meet health minister Alistair Burt on 25 May discuss the situation.

It comes as they have already considered joining an existing legal case against PMS cuts brought by patients of a practice based in Huddersfield.

The patient group has claimed NHS West Norfolk CCG and NHS England should have consulted patients before deciding on the level of cuts to the 37,000-patient practice.

Lynn News reported that the health secretary has rejected an appeal from the practice against the cuts, following an earlier rejection from NHS England.

This is the second appeal against the cuts after the first was refused by NHS England.

Sir Henry said he was hopeful the decision may be changed, saying NHS England had to ‘get a grip of this, review it and start again’.

However NHS West Norfolk CCG chief officer Dr Sue Crossman said the decision ‘will not be reversed or consulted upon’.

The CCG said it was not its job to consult patients because it ’does not currently commission general practice’, while NHS England said they can only consult patients after plans have been set out for development.

It said in a statement: ‘Following the conclusion of the appeal process, NHS England and the local CCG will work together to set out plans that support the development and transformation of all local GP practices through equitable and fair investment of the released funding. Once plans are developed we will be able to engage with patients.’

The funding cuts decision was reached as part of the national review of PMS premiums, which aims to ‘redeploy’ funding across GP practices.