Supply Management blog on GP Commissioning

I've done another post for the Supply Management blog, looking at the plans for GP Commissioning in the NHS.

This is a very difficult and complex subject, and I would certainly not claim to have a definitive answer; the current system of PCTs clearly has some flaws. On the other hand, a lot of effort for a number of years has gone into trying to improve it; the new policy is basically ripping up that entire system and starting again.  I have my doubts; and I do believe it could be political dynamite.  Read the full blog here, but a couple of scenarios from my SM post in terms of what could go wrong:

  • The largest GP consortium in the Health Service runs out of money 10 months through the year and begs for more funds; the press discover they have been paying £3000 a day to a top US consulting firm for “procurement advice”, and the same firm has entertained many of the GPs in the consortium to a lavish day out at Wimbledon.
  • A new breed of GP Consortia managers, many ex GPs or PCT bosses, are found to be earning more than the Prime Minster, or in some cases, more even than a junior executive at the BBC.  Some combine this role with their regular GP work and are now making £250,000 plus a year.  Indeed, GPs salaries have grown by 25% in three years since their 2011 ‘tough’ new contract was agreed.

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Voices (2)

  1. Rob:

    Observers are not solely focused upon the GPs themselves (and their ability to manage funds, budgets and ‘purchasing’ of Health services along pathways), but on the potential 500, or so, commissioning consortia that will need to be created within a very narrow timeframe.

    Potentially, only one sector could possibly really do this at a pace – with the backing of significant (requisite) investment (£ms) and the attraction and promise (no doubt) of significant returns (£ms).

    Step forward the global health maintenance and insurance industry…

    …and all they(?) would need to do, is figure out how to establish this new layer in this potentially, highly litigious, EU Regulated procurement environment…

    …but observers have also noted that if GPs themselves (who are private enterprises) ‘procure’ this layer, it may not fall within the reach of any such regulations, particularly if there are no such precedents (in the UK)…

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