For East and West Sussex LMCs
Dr Russell Brown
19 June 2014
The GPC held its latest meeting today. The latest official GPC news can be found at the BMA Communities web site. The meeting this time was in two parts, with GPC proper held in the morning session and subcommittee meetings in the afternoon.
There is much going on in the background, developing and assisting idea formation within the DH. As usual, much is confidential. However, PMS reviews guidance and a checklist for LMCs has been published. The LMC in our area has already had extensive experience in assisting practices during the review process. I would recommend practices affected by reviews approach the LMC office at the earliest stages. A letter has ben sent to once again ask what support the outlying practices affected by the phasing out of MPIG has yet to be replied to. I am not aware of any outliers in our area but of more concern is those practices outside of the 98 identified by NHSE as outliers, as many other practices are going to find the situation uncomfortable if not ruinous. Again, please contact the LMC office as early as you can if you have any concerns about your practice. Care.data was not a big feature of the agenda today, a welcome break. Pilots are however to be held later this year, involving 100-500 practices, to look at the mechanism for data extraction. There is no date set for the national roll out of the scheme. A GPC CCG involvement survey has taken place, the results of which will be published soon. I hope it will make some CCGs around the country take note. The local Somerset QOF replacement scheme was discussed at length. It is causing much consternation and concern. Though practices will not be performance managed, they will still need to do the work (and so will be collecting the data anyway). I am concerned that this is a short term view which will have implications for a nationally negotiated contract in future. NHSE has been clear that this is a one off pilot and we are pressing to ensure that a proper and full evaluation takes place, given the DH’s past definition of the word “pilot” in various other schemes.
The “Your GP cares” campaign was launched at LMC Conference. Although separate, the RCGP have also launched a campaign and the two organisations are now, finally, collaborating on the development of both and planning to work much more closely in the future. Given the different nuances of the two bodies, this can only be a good thing. Practices should expect to receive patient materials from the comms team very soon. I would encourage all practices to engage with the campaign. As a part of the campaign, there is an e-petition at http://epetitions.direct.gov.uk/petitions/65093. I urge you to read it and sign it and share it with your professional and personal networks such as patient groups and friends on Facebook or Twitter. It has already drawn almost 5000 people to sign it in its first few weeks. It’s closing date is next year, just before the General Election. Additionally, an early day motion, sponsored by several past health ministers including Frank Dobson is being placed before the Commons. Please consider emailing your GP, which can be done easily by clicking on the following link and following the prompts. It takes about 2 minutes and could have a real impact. The link is http://bma.org.uk/working-for-change/your-gp-cares/email-your-local-politician.
Recruitment and the future
Figures soon to be published have revealed an absolutely dire situation in GP training, with many places north of London desperately short of candidate for training places. Worse, HEE is shifting funding around and planning on spending money meant to train GPs on other projects, given they have been unable to fill places. The only solution is to make General Practice a more attractive carer choice and that is in the gift of others, which of course is where the negotiations we go through each year come in.
The next meeting is to be held on 17 July 2014, but I will be on annual leave that week. There will be an election for the negotiating Executive team taking place. I will be voting by proxy,, an arrangement which allows a more democratic process. Until recently, on those actually present at the relevant meeting could vote. There is a hiatus in August so expect my next report in September.
I hope you have found this report helpful. Please feedback so that I can ensure my reports are useful.
Dr Russell Brown