Global sum funding per patient to rise 6% from April under new contract

GP practices in England will receive £85.35 per weighted patient from April 2017 under the revised GP contract deal, up 5.9% from 2016/17.

Global sum funding per weighted patient will rise from £80.59 in 2016/17 to £85.35 in 2017/18 under the GP contract deal published on Tuesday.

The QOF will remain unchanged for 2017/18, but the value of each QOF point will increase by £6.02, a 3.6% increase. The change will take the value of each QOF point from £165.18 in 2016/17 to £171.20 in 2017/18.

The increase reflects the rise in average practice list sizes from 7,460 on 1 January 2016 to 7,732 on 1 January 2017. Practice list sizes have risen sharply since the practice-based GMS contract was introduced in 2004, when the average list was around 5,500 patients.

The change has been accelerated as practices mergers and closures accelerated in recent years.

GP funding

The BMA and NHS England have confirmed that the overall increase in investment for the 2017/18 contract will be £238.7m. The increase is £18.7m more than the £220m rise in GP contract funding for 2016/17.

The £220m rise in 2016/17 was the largest increase for some years in the GP contract, representing an uplift of around 3.2%. The 2017/18 uplift amounts to an increase of around 3.3% on the 2016/17 total investment - taking total GP contract funding to around £7.3bn.

The sharp increase in global sum funding for 2017/18 is driven in part by the new investment, and by the decision to scrap the controversial £157m unplanned admissions DES, with funding for the scheme moving into global sum.

GP leaders have said the contract will not solve the GP crisis, but believe that measures to cover rises in CQC fees and increases in indemnity costs will help ease pressure on practices.

Writing for GPonline on Wednesday, GPC deputy chair Dr Richard Vautrey warned: 'General practice does not have enough staff or resources to cope with the growing demand and needs of an ageing population with complicated conditions. The contract changes will relieve some of the pressure for the time being, but it is the foundations of general practice that need shoring up in the long term.'

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