Senior Conservative MP Sir Henry Bellingham challenges the logic of “appalling” GP funding cuts.
As a consequence of the national NHS England PMS GP contract premium funding review, patients at four out of five surgeries operated by the award-winning GP provider group face the loss of their local GP service. Amidst the widely acknowledged national GP “crisis” and “state of emergency” patients face huge uncertainty regarding access to GP services. The wilful destruction of the local surgery model for General Practice continues to impact massively on local GP services and patients.
Pulse magazine reports on wider legal action proposed by patient groups from six surgeries (37,000 patients) in East Anglia. “Patients of a GP practice in Norfolk are considering joining a ‘class action’ legal challenge against NHS England over PMS funding cuts” after practices disclosed the cuts to their patient reference group and local press coverage.
In the true spirit of “co-commissioning” NHS England appears to have forgotten to have told West Yorkshire Clinical Commissioning Groups that it has delayed the claw-back of 12.5% of GP PMS budgets from 01/10/2015. In the meantime Greater Huddersfield CCG has spent the money as capital for local GP incentive schemes and has an apparent deficit in a budget line.
The innovative and highly regarded Huddersfield University Practice goes public with it’s campaign to fight 33% funding cuts that are being imposed with no consultation or engagement with the patient community. NHS England issues it’s usual statement. The practice is promoted on the thriving Huddersfield University web-site.
GPs and campaigners from east London, South Yorkshire and West Yorkshire unite in an SOS call to action for practices nationally.
“GP” reporter Neil Roberts reports on legal challenge to Slaithwaite Health Centre funding cuts:
“PMS contract cuts that threaten to close practices could be unlawful, according to a GP whose practice faces a 44% reduction in funding.”
Published one day after Slawit Health Centre SOS spokesperson Fiona Russell raised this on BBC Radio Leeds
Slaithwaite, Huddersfield and wider community residents hold consultation into the future of NHS GP services in Slaithwaite village “because NHS chiefs have failed to do so.”
Slaithwaite Health Centre GP Practice is facing an enforced 44% budget cut. More than 3000 GP surgeries nationally (and nearly 60% Huddersfield GP surgeries) face “PMS” budget cuts of varying degrees. Concurrently Huddersfield commissioners are consulting on plans to downgrade Huddersfield Royal Infirmary.
Huddersfield Examiner reports the actions of the “Slawit Health Centre SOS” patient action group – more details available on Facebook.
The halcyon days of effective political opposition and impact – May 2014.
Fast forward to 28th January 2016 – Labour’s Shadow Health Secretary Heidi Alexander derailed Norman Lamb’s NHS/care commission bill after months of progress towards cross-party working. Also out the window went are only hope as a nation of stopping ruinous NHS and care cuts and securing a future NHS and social care system. Untold misery will now descend on patients and citizens nationally.
Andy Burnam May 2014:
‘I’m open minded, but there has to be a solution, and soon for practices like this.’
‘I’m going to go back after today and wonder how best we are going to do it, but we will be raising this in a significant way in parliament in the coming weeks. We don’t want this practice to stay in this position. It is totally unfair. It’s unfair on the staff, unfair on the doctors but it’s particularly unfair on the patients.’
He also questioned what advice the government had received on MPIG withdrawal.
‘I was always warned that to remove it would destabilise or pull the rug from a number of practices, so I’m wondering, have the current government had the same advice. And if they have, why have they gone ahead with this change that, now, has thrown this practice into real uncertainty.’