Letters: PMS budget managers need careful supervision

I write after reading the story on PCTs admitting to freezing PMS pay (GP, 25 September).

I am still fighting a £40,000 annual cut in my budget from 2005 when the PCT did not increase the budget by the amount paid in employers' superannuation - it then refused to acknowledge it had made a mistake.

It looks as if it's heading for judicial review. Practices should triple check that such sums were added into their baseline budget for 2005 onwards and also that the changes to dispensing payments were also correctly applied a couple of years ago - something else the PCT failed to undertake until challenged.

Managers who run PMS budgets at PCTs may not have sufficient knowledge of how the various payments systems work across the NHS and need to be watched carefully.

Dr Nigel Higson, Hove

- Anne Foster, strategic commissioner for primary care, NHS Brighton and Hove replies: 'The superannuation issue raised by Dr Higson was settled by the NHS Litigation Authority (NHSLA) in July 2009. The NHSLA concluded that the contract value was correct.

'We also considered Dr Higson's contract to ensure he was receiving a fair payment per patient - he receives a payment per patient in line with the city average and above the national average global sum per patient.

'We fully acknowledge the dispensing payment issue and have corrected the payment. We have apologised to Dr Higson for this administrative error.'

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