CQC fees for GP practices unchanged for 2019/20

CQC fees charged for GP practices will remain unchanged in 2019/20, a consultation published by the watchdog reveals.

GP consultation (Photo: iStock.com/solstock)

The CQC introduced a revamped fee system in 2018/19, scrapping the previous banding scale in favour of a formula that calculates each practice's fee based on list size and locations.

Following the major change last year, the CQC consultation says 'we need to allow changes from last year to bed in and understand their impact before suggesting further changes'.

The funding formula may change in future, however, to reflect 'significant change' in the NHS as a whole, the CQC suggests. The consultation document says: 'The health and social care sector as a whole is undergoing a period of significant change with the development of models of integration in health and social care and any future changes to the fees scheme must accommodate these developments.'

CQC fees

Under the system introduced last year, an average-sized single-site GP practice with 8,133 patients pays around £5,145, according to the regulator's fee calculator. This is around £619 more than the 2017/18 fee for single-site practices with between 5,001 and 10,000 patients - a rise of almost 14%.

The changes were expected to shift costs away from smaller providers, however, with the CQC pointing out that a provider with one location and a patient list size of 5,200 would see their fee decrease from £4,526 in 2017/18  to £3,473 in 2018/19.

GP practices' CQC fees are currently reimbursed in full by NHS England under an agreement reached as part of the 2017/18 GP contract deal. However, practices still have to pay out the fee before recouping it.

Fees for 2019/20 are expected to change slightly despite the payment system remaining unchanged, because of the way the formula calculates fees.

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