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Is the workload dump from secondary care subsiding?



It has been three years since the GP Forward View imposed contractual obligations on trusts to stop dumping work on GP practices.

However, I am not sure this has made any difference. It seems to me that GPs are still being asked to re-refer patients who miss a secondary care appointment, and are still having to chase discharge letters.

I ask myself what NHS England would do if GP practices basically ignored their contractual requirements like this

So it is maybe no surprise that the chair of the RCGP has had to come up with a novel way of countering this. She is asking patients to take pictures of the consultant’s notes.

Now, this seems pretty clever to me. But we do have to ask ourselves why GPs are having to resort to this. Trusts are under huge amounts of pressure too, but in order for the whole health service to function better, they should be looking for ways to deal with missed appointments, using consultant-to-consultant referrals without involving the GP and actually getting discharge letters to GPs in time.

I ask myself what NHS England would do if GP practices basically ignored their contractual requirements like this. I think we know the answer.

Jaimie Kaffash is editor of Pulse. Follow him on Twitter @jkaffash or email him at editor@pulsetoday.co.uk

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