GPs 'can beat private providers'

GPs providing services under the government's any qualified provider (AQP) scheme have urged more practices to bid for the contracts.

Dr Mark Attah: 'Practices can do it. You need to find a gap in services'
Dr Mark Attah: 'Practices can do it. You need to find a gap in services'

Although private companies dominate the list of providers approved to offer care under AQP, successful practices are saying that other GPs can do it too.

Practices that have bid for work say it has helped them to retain enhanced services, offer the care patients want and even prepare for CQC registration.

Services under AQP can be offered by any NHS, private or voluntary organisation approved by a PCT.

The Bretton Medical Practice in Peterborough, Cambridgeshire, provides a vasectomy service under AQP. Partner Dr Mark Attah said the practice had run the service since 2005 and its contract was renewed under AQP last autumn. 'Practices can do it,' Dr Attah said. 'You need to find a gap in services.'

Collaborating with other practices and speaking to those already providing services under AQP could help GPs mount successful bids, he said. Dr Attah described AQP as a 'positive thing' that helped deliver 'what patients want' - more services outside hospital.

The Ecclesfield Group Practice in Sheffield runs a community cardiology diagnostics service under AQP, allowing patients to take home an ECG monitor for 24 hours. Partner Dr Andrew McCoye said: 'They love it. It saves them going into hospital.'

The practice previously offered cardiology diagnostics as a local enhanced service, and retained the work after a successful bid under AQP.

Dr McCoye admitted the application process involved 'quite a big document'. But despite a PCT request for extra information, he added: 'It wasn't too onerous.'

The Lander Medical Practice in Truro, Cornwall, provides a musculoskeletal back and neck pain service under AQP.

Practice manager Liz Wilson said a team of about four completed the bid, compiling data on equality and diversity, workforce and care pathways. 'It was useful because preparing the documents and policies stood us in good stead for CQC registration.'

She said other practices could follow suit. 'You can do it. The most difficult part was trying to load it on to the website.'

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

More than half of GP locums have seen a significant drop in income due to COVID-19

More than half of GP locums have seen a significant drop in income due to COVID-19

More than half of GP locums have experienced a significant fall in their income during...

How a GP helped develop a protective shield to cover patients needing CPR in the pandemic

How a GP helped develop a protective shield to cover patients needing CPR in the pandemic

Wiltshire GP Dr Lydia Campbell-Hill explains how she helped create a mini isolation...

GP practices can now sign up to new online PPE portal

GP practices can now sign up to new online PPE portal

GP practices will be able to register with the DHSC's new online PPE portal, which...

Fully-qualified GP workforce fell by 712 over the past year

Fully-qualified GP workforce fell by 712 over the past year

The fully-qualified GP workforce in England fell by 2.5%, losing 712 full-time equivalent...

MPs call for expert guidance on medico-legal implications of pandemic

MPs call for expert guidance on medico-legal implications of pandemic

A group of MPs has called on the government to set up an independent expert committee...

Coronavirus: Key guidance GPs need to know about COVID-19

Coronavirus: Key guidance GPs need to know about COVID-19

GPonline provides an overview of the key guidance relating to coronavirus, including...