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Two thirds of commissioners unconvinced over PCT legacy debt

Two thirds of those involved in clinical commissioning groups remain unconvinced that they will not have to deal with a PCT legacy debt when their group becomes authorised, according to a new survey.

The email survey carried out by the NHS Alliance and NAPC, attracted 128 repsonses made up of 55 per cent GPs and 45 per cent CCG managers.

Only 27 per cent were ‘fully/quite confident' that they would not have to deal with legacy debt from the former PCT cluster while 31 per cent said they lacked confidence and 36 per cent were ‘not at all confident'.

The NHS Alliance and NAPC presented the results of their joint survey at their first joint CCG conference in London last week.

The survey results reflect the mixed picture of the support and freedom CCGs are receiving around the country.

Other  results included:

  • 30 per cent predicted having to make a case to their NHSCB/cluster about not being co-terminous with their local authority
  • 46 per cent reported being restricted in the commissioning support they are able to access  – of these respondents 60 per cent said they were only being offered existing PCT cluster support
  • 43 per cent said they were ‘confident' and 17 per cent ‘very confident' they will be ready for full authorisation to go live in April 2013
  • 36 per cent said they were facing pressure from the PCT cluster to change its shape/size in order to pass the ‘viability' test by October 2011

Dr Amit Bhargava, co-lead for the NHS Alliance commissioning federation, who led one of the conference workshops said feedback on how the authorisation process was going across the country was very varied and ranged from facilitative and supportive to the ‘downright obstructive'.

NAPC chair, Dr Johnny Marshall, called for solutions found for one area's authorisation process to then be applied to similar localities facing the same challenges.

Earlier this month the NAPC and NHS Alliance announced they had become an ‘informal entity' provisionally known as ‘the coalition' to support clinical commissioning and CCGs.