Commissioning GPs to hit budget

One of England's first commissioning pilots is on track to come in on budget at the financial year-end, GP understands.

Dr Simon Brown: hitting budgets

NHS Cambridgeshire officially launched Hunts Health commissioning cluster, covering 70,000 patients, in September with the aim of improving quality and efficiency.

Dr Simon Brown, lead GP at Hunts Health, said it is 'realistic' to say that the consortium will come in on budget. He also said prescribing spend and elective and non-elective referral activity of practices within the consortium had gone down.

'We took in a spread of practices. Some of those which previously overspent are now coming towards control and other practices that were already within budgets have already improved,' he said.

He cites clinical engagement and peer review as key drivers of the reduction in referrals and prescribing activity.

Dr Brown said: 'People have a sense of being in control. Being part of a cluster has allowed ownership and behaviours are starting to change.'

Meanwhile, Dr Brown said the group, which comprises 10 practices, has also implemented changes to the local acute trust's non-elective pathways.

All patients now receive estimated dates of discharge, and inpatient cases are actively managed. 'This has had the effect of reducing length of stay, which was a priority.'

Dr Brown admitted taking on commissioning on top of the day job meant a 'busy week'.

He added: 'It is crucial for me to work as a GP. There needs to be a balance, and I am not sure we have achieved this. But I am still managing six or seven clinical sessions a week.'

Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins


Already registered?

Sign in

Just published

X-ray sign

Spike in TB cases prompts public health warning

Cases of TB in England have risen by 7% compared with last year, prompting a warning...

COVID-19 vaccine

GPs demand investigation as winter vaccine 'mismanagement' risks patient safety

GP leaders in England have demanded an investigation into 'mismanagement' of this...

Medical centre sign

GP 'engineering' fears as small practice contracts offered on branch-only basis

GP leaders have raised concerns over the 'engineering' of general practice after...

Close up of BMA official picket armband

SAS doctors in England to hold indicative ballot on strike action

Specialist, associate specialist and specialty (SAS) doctors in England could join...

BMA sign

BMA to oppose expansion of physician associate roles amid safety concerns

Doctors' leaders will oppose government plans to expand use of physician associates...

Doctor strikes

Public strongly back talks and new pay offer to end doctor strikes

The general public believe the government should reopen talks to end doctor strikes...