COVID-19 vaccination payments worth around £80m to come through in February

Around £80m - £12,000 per average GP practice in England - could be paid to primary care networks in February in the first wave of payments for jabs under the COVID-19 vaccination enhanced service.

COVID-19 funding (Photo: Andrew Brookes/Getty Images)
COVID-19 funding (Photo: Andrew Brookes/Getty Images)

Slides from an NHS England webinar for primary care staff obtained by GPonline warn that practices must enter all data on COVID-19 vaccinations provided between 14 December and 31 January into the Pinnacle system by no later than one minute before midnight on 4 February.

Payments will then come through to the nominated lead practice within each primary care network (PCN) - if possible on the same day that they receive their normal scheduled contractual payment.

Under the agreement set out in the COVID-19 enhanced service, funding will then be distributed to practices within the network according to the collaboration agreement signed by practices in the group.

COVID-19 vaccine

By the end of 31 January, GP-led vaccination sites are likely to have delivered around 6m doses of COVID-19 vaccine in total - including first and second doses - analysis by GPonline suggests.

PCNs will receive £12.58 per dose administered - plus a supplement of between £10 and £30 per vaccination in a care home. Jabs in care homes delivered before Sunday 17 January attract a £30 additional fee, with this supplement dropping to £20 for doses between 18 and 24 January and £10 the following week.

Health and social care secretary Matt Hancock said on 21 January that 63% of England's 300,000 care home residents had received a first dose of vaccine - and that this cohort would be fully covered before the end of January. There are around 400,000 care home staff in England - and although many of these staff may have received a jab in other settings such as hospital hubs, PCNs can claim the supplement for those who were vaccinated in care homes.

The basic item of service payments for the 6m estimated doses delivered by 31 January will total around £75m - with a further £6m or more likely for the supplementary payments for care homes.

Primary care network

The NHS England slides explain that payments will be managed by the NHS Business Services Authority (NHSBSA) - and warns the process is 'very different to existing GP practice processes which extract data direct from the GP record'.

PCNs will need to validate the data used to calculate payments within the NHSBSA 'Manage Your Service' system. Two nominated representatives from each PCN will receive login details by the end of 3 February - and further detail will be shared with PCNs on how to validate and correct data.

PCNs will 'need to log in to review and validate data between Friday 5 and Wednesday 10 February', with payments to come through in February. If the nominated lead practice's normal monthly contractual payment is earlier in the month, COVID-19 vaccine payments will come through on a separate date - but the payments are expected otherwise to come through on the same date as the lead practice's normal payments.

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