DoH attempt to rejuvenate practice-based commissioning flops

Practice-based commissioning (PBC) activity has fallen in the months since the DoH's latest attempt to revive the flagging scheme.

The DoH published Clinical Commissioning: Our Vision for PBC in March to rejuvenate the stagnating policy.

But wave seven of the DoH's quarterly surveys, conducted between April and June, reveals a slight decline in the number of practices submitting plans (down 2% to 62%) and receiving budgets (down 2% to 67%). 

A quarter of the 9,000 general practices in England are chosen at random for the quarterly survey.

The DoH said the results may be 'partially explained' by the most recent wave being at the start of the financial year.

Despite most GPs rating their relationship with their PCT as good (76%), there is still massive regional variation, with 70% of GPs in Devon describing theirs as poor or very poor.

A DoH spokeswoman said that more practices than ever were commissioning services through PBC, with nine out of 10 practices in a PBC group, and more support and guidance was being given to PCTs.

‘PCTs will be aware that failure to provide the necessary support to commissioners will impact on their World Class Commissioning assurance results,' she said.

The stagnation of PBC will concern the DoH, after Lord Ara Darzi set out plans to introduce a similar scheme for hospital consultants before he resigned as health minister.

  • Has PBC stalled in your area?
  • Read this week's GP dated 7 August for the full version of this story.


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