However, he said that Choose and Book might be easier to drop.
'There is a greater consensus on Choose and Book because people are fed up with it anyway,' he said, ‘but most people see PBC in a positive light and see it as protecting GP interests in terms of being able to shift resources out of hospitals.
'So there's a mixed opinion about if that's appropriate, because government would say it will just get someone else to do it, maybe even the private sector which I don't think would be in the interests of GPs.'
Jo Webber, deputy director of policy at the NHS Confederation and a former district nurse, agreed. 'GPs are not the only people who can do PBC. Nurse-led practices can do it and I think that's quite a driver to focus people's attention on what they want out of PBC - both GPs, PCTs and community providers.'