Cost fears could paralyse commissioning innovation, patient representative says

Fears about costs could paralyse innovation in primary care commissioning, according to an expert patient programme chief.

Talking at the 2010 Capital Pain Conference in London on Thursday, Simon Knighton, chief executive of the Expert Patients Community Interest Company, said the removal of bureaucratic barriers between primary and acute care could provide GPs with more time, support and resources to be better equipped to treat patients.

But he added: ‘Current and cost pressure amongst primary care commissioners could produce a state of paralysis that could discourage innovation and reinforce paternal attitudes about the role of the clinician.’

Mr Knighton also said through different planning and integration of patient-centred care service, could mean better healthcare could be delivered at less cost.

He said: ‘Oddly enough, there is a 'one time only' opportunity  that could be developed as a result of the enforced changes to primary care provision, if policy makers are prepared to face down the inevitable challenges and tensions that are within the current NHS establishment.’

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