Only 35 per cent of patients remember being offered choice.

Practices still stand to lose al-most £3,000 on average because so few patients referred for elec-tive surgery recall being offered a choice of hospital, according to the latest statistics from the DoH.

Since January 2006, GPs have been expected to offer patients a choice of at least four hospitals at the point of referral.

Under the Choice and Booking directed enhanced service (DES) in England, practices receive achievement pay if 60 per cent of patients referred recall being offered this choice. The achievement payment is 48p per patient on the practice list, or £2,828 to an average-sized practice with 5,891 patients.

Figures for May and June, published last month (GP 17 November), showed that only 30 per cent of patients recalled being offered choice. Although the latest figures for July do show an increase it is only to 35 per cent.

Similar increases in July’s figures show 32 per cent of patients were aware before they visited their GP that they had a choice of hospitals, compared with 29 per cent in the May/June survey.

Also 55 per cent of patients who were aware of choice recalled being offered choice compared with 51 per cent in the May/June survey.

GPC negotiator Dr Richard Vautrey said that the surveys bore out the GPC’s worst fears about the unfairness of basing GP pay on patient survey results.




Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins


Already registered?

Sign in

Just published

GP on phone in recorded consultation assessment

Consultation skills to help GP trainees pass the RCA

Dr Afsar Rizvi highlights the key skills GP trainees need to master in order to pass...

Wes Streeting

Labour promises same GP 'each appointment' and face-to-face access if patients want it

A Labour government would offer patients the chance to see 'the same doctor each...

Man wearing mask on train

UK faces serious threat from flu and COVID-19 'twindemic' this winter

There are strong indications the UK faces a dangerous 'twindemic' of COVID-19 and...

NHS sign outside a building

PCN contract overhaul defers two-week appointment target until April 2023

NHS England has announced changes to the network contract DES, including deferring...


NHS sets out priorities for extra GP funding this winter

Integrated care boards could target extra funding for general practice at phone systems,...

Shadow chancellor Rachel Reeves

Labour promises to double medical school places with tax cut reversal

A Labour government would double medical school places with funding raised from reversing...