GP commissioners will be bound by EU competition law

GP commissioners will be bound by EU competition law and procurement skills will be a 'key requirement' for commissioners, a legal expert writing in the BMJ has warned.

(Photograph: Haymarket/Richard Martins)
(Photograph: Haymarket/Richard Martins)
Solicitor Robert McGough and GP Dr Rupert Dunbar-Rees said the current proposals suggest that GP commissioners will have to obey public contract regulations in the same way as PCTs.

The study said even smaller contracts would not be exempt from EU principles of ‘non-discrimination, transparency, proportionality, equal treatment and mutual recognition’.

It said: ‘Although there are other elements of the competition regime, such as mergers and acquisition rules, that will affect commissioning, it is the rules for procurement of goods and services that will have the greatest effect.’

‘Procurement will need to be run exceptionally carefully when consortiums have bidders for a service from a service from within their constituent member practices.’  (BMJ 2011; 342:d2071)

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