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Letter of the week: Debt will make the difficult, impossible

I support your campaign for a clean slate when GPs take over commissioning.

It will be hard enough to deliver the same service with year-on-year reductions in our budget – even if we start from zero. The NHS has a target to save £20bn in four years, which will require sweeping efficiency savings and innovative new ways to deliver care. If PCTs hand over a ship that is already taking on water, we will capsize.

The proposals also take no account of the legal implications of asking GPs to manage demand. We will need some protection or indemnity against complaints caused when we refuse access to certain treatments. The doctor-patient relationship will be a serious casualty. Reducing the role of NICE and asking GPs at the front line to make decisions on treatments that are beyond their competence is unacceptable.

We are already burdening GPs with conflict of interest in expecting them to be both commissioners and providers. To burden them further with debts is a non-starter.

From Dr Kumar Kotegaonkar

If PCT’s hand over a ship that is already taking on water, the NHS will capsize Click here for more information on our campaign. Clean slate campaign Do you have a strong opinion about general practice?

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