DoH rejects criticisms of Darzi centre locations

The DoH has dismissed claims that PCTs are putting new practices in the wrong areas because the procurement timetable is so tight.

'It's not a legitimate argument to make,' Dr Mike Warburton, the director of the GP access programme, told GP.

The government has told PCTs that they must sign contracts for the new services by the end of the year. Deputy GPC chairman Dr Richard Vautrey has warned that this meant PCTs were being 'forced to site new surgeries where they have buildings, rather than where they are needed'.

But Dr Warburton said that, although PCTs had to choose a location for a new practice, the choice of premises could be made later. Contracts can specify that they are 'subject to suitable premises', he said.

'Many PCTs will meet the timetable, but say that premises are to be determined,' he said.

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