Scottish GPs to vote on 2018 contract reform that will create 'winners and losers'

GPs in Scotland will be able to vote on whether they accept any changes to their funding as part of a new contract set to be introduced from 2018.

Scottish LMCs conference (Photo: Kenneth Ferguson)
Scottish LMCs conference (Photo: Kenneth Ferguson)

Delegates at the 2017 Scottish LMCs conference in Clydebank demanded on Friday that practice incomes are protected during the transition period to a new Scottish GP contract.

Proposing the motion, Dr Paul Ryan from Glasgow LMC said: ‘I'm not aware of any practice that thinks it has too much money. If the guaranteed funding system changes, then practices are at risk.

‘We cannot remove money from general practice – we have to ensure incomes are protected during this period of change.’

Another attending GP said: ‘We must not see a robbing Peter to pay Paul scenario – the government must not take funding from the few practices that are working to pay those that are struggling.

GP funding

‘We cannot see a contract come in that cuts some contracts to try resuscitate others.'

Chair Dr Alan McDevitt said the Scottish GPC had secured agreements from the government that the totality of GMS funding ‘will not be reduced’ when moving to the new contract.

‘We have protected practice incomes in our agreements,’ he said – but warned that there will ‘always be winners and loser in contract changes’.

‘As we remove services from practices, the income will remain with the practices – that’s an important principle of what we’re doing,’ he said.

‘At the end of this, we will present to you the vision on how you will be paid and how this will change. You can vote on whether you accept that new system with its inevitable foibles, and say if this overall going to save general practice – that’s your choice.

‘I’d like to think that will happen towards the end of this year – it still needs to go through parliament – but we will present it to you and give you that choice in a vote after seeing all the good and bad points.

Motion approved by conference in full:

  • That this conference demands GP practice incomes are protected during the transition period to a new Scottish GP contract.

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