DoH says Review Body has no role in GMS pay

Exclusive: The Doctors' and Dentists' Review Body has no role in recommending pay under the new GMS contract, the DoH has claimed.

This directly contradicts the GPC view that the Review Body should recommend an increase for 2007/8 after negotiations with NHS Employers stalled.

Contract negotiations have not been officially terminated but are at a standstill because the two sides are deeply divided.

Last month GP leaders insisted on an above-inflation pay rise of around 4 per cent, but NHS Employers' negotiators acting for the DoH pushed for 2.5 per cent or less. GP leaders said even this was in return for additional work.

The GPC is prepared to continue the negotiations, but submitted evidence to the Review Body last month as a negotiated settlement became increasingly unlikely. It called for a 4 per cent rise to all elements of the GMS contract, including the quality framework.

However, a DoH spokesman told GP this week: ‘The Review Body's role is about GP pay; it does not have a role on the new contract, which is about services being delivered by practices.'

The spokesman said practice-based contracts covered the pay of other health professionals as well as GPs. He added that, because GPs received pay from enhanced services and personal work as well as the national contract, ‘it would be extremely difficult for the Review Body to determine increases in overall GP remuneration'.

‘We therefore do not believe it would be possible for the Review Body to disentangle these factors and make meaningful recommendations in time to report for 2007,' the spokesman said.

The Review Body is expected to report in early 2007, and will decide for itself whether to make recommendations. A spokesman said that no decision had been reached.

The Review Body has traditionally recommended pay rises for all doctors and dentists, but since the new GMS contract took effect its role has been limited to recommending rises for salaried GPs, registrars and trainers. GMS increases have been agreed between the GPC and DoH.

GP leaders say the GMS contract does not rule out asking the Review Body to recommend practice income. GPC chairman Dr Hamish Meldrum said: ‘The Review Body has always been the way doctors' and dentists' pay has been determined.

‘Since we are only talking about a percentage uplift to the contract, we think it is appropriate for the body to comment on what it thinks GPs should receive.'

He said there had ‘never been any suggestion' that the Review Body was not able to make recommendations on new GMS pay.

Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Register

Already registered?

Sign in

Follow Us:

Just published

Under 40s to be offered alternative to AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine

Under 40s to be offered alternative to AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine

Patients aged 30-39 will be offered an alternative to the Oxford/AstraZeneca COVID-19...

GPs per patient down 10% in just five years, NHS data reveal

GPs per patient down 10% in just five years, NHS data reveal

The number of fully-qualified, full-time equivalent (FTE) GPs per patient in England...

Supportive model must replace harmful CQC inspections, BMA chair warns

Supportive model must replace harmful CQC inspections, BMA chair warns

CQC inspections that ‘divert time away from patient care’ and ‘instil fear’ among...

UK COVID-19 vaccination programme tracker

UK COVID-19 vaccination programme tracker

GPs across the UK are playing a leading role in the largest-ever NHS vaccination...

A 'tsunami' of work is drowning general practice: GPs speak out about a profession at its limit

A 'tsunami' of work is drowning general practice: GPs speak out about a profession at its limit

Rocketing workloads created by huge backlogs of cases and continuing COVID-19 disruption...

Slight increase in GP workforce during past year, but number of partners continues to fall

Slight increase in GP workforce during past year, but number of partners continues to fall

The GP workforce grew by 0.4% in the year to March 2021, but the number of GP partners...