Improve finance with GP training

Clinicians should be trained in financial management to improve working relationships within the NHS and ultimately patient care, a report by the Audit Commission claims.

This is vital if the NHS is to be more efficient and improve services for patients, according to the Prescription for Partnership: Engaging Clinicians In Financial Management report.

It looks at practice-based commissioning (PBC), saying it gives GPs and practice staff 'effective control over millions of pounds worth of NHS commissioning expenditure'.

Recommendations to chief executives, medical directors and finance directors include training clinical staff in financial management.

It describes PBC as a powerful financial incentive for practices to alter care pathways and change referral patterns in the interest of efficiency.

It also looks at schemes that have made savings, including North East Lincolnshire Care Trust, which made savings of £500,000 in 2006/7 through reduced hospital activity.

Audit Commission report

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