LMCs demand renegotiation of COVID-19 enhanced service deal

LMCs have called for a renegotiation of funding for the COVID-19 vaccination enhanced service, rejecting the single designated site model and plans for the services to be open 8am to 8pm seven days a week.

COVID vaccine (Photo: KMatta/Getty Images)
COVID vaccine (Photo: KMatta/Getty Images)

In the final debate at the 2020 England LMCs conference, GPs backed a motion hitting out at the 'pace and pressure' put on the BMA's GP commitee to negotiate the enhanced service.

LMCs also called  for 'an immediate renegotiation of funding and flexibility attached to the proposed enhanced service, now that timelines and possibilities are better understood'.

The motion said conference 'rejects the mandated 8am-8pm seven days a week proposals' - warning that GPs are best placed to decide 'when and how to conduct their business to ensure maximal population coverage with minimal wastage'.

COVID-19 vaccination

LMC leaders also voted to reject the 'suggestion of single PCN designated sites' and called on the BMA GP committee to push for 'vaccine choice allowing general practice to deliver what it can at practice level'.

The vote is a major shot across the bows of both the BMA and NHS England over the framework agreed for practices to deliver COVID-19 vaccination, and comes potentially just 10 days before practices are set to begin to administer vaccines to patients.

It could also complicate the process of practices signing up to the proposed enhanced service, with a full specification expected imminently, which all practices will be invited to accept.

Although the full specification has yet to be made public, practices have been told they will receive £25.16 per patient vaccinated once both of two required doses have been administered.

Enhanced service

NHS England has asked practices in each primary care network area to choose a 'designated' site from which to deliver COVID-19 vaccinations - potentially starting from 7 December if doses become available. Most sites have now been approved.

GPonline revealed earlier today that funding for vaccinations will be delivered to a single 'host' practice in each area - with GPs then expected to agree how funding should be distributed for patients on local practice lists who have received the vaccine.

The vote comes after the government asked the MHRA earlier today to assess the Astra Zeneca/Oxford vaccine for approval to be used by the NHS.

The vaccine, which has been shown to be up to 90% effective, could become available next month if approved, with 4m doses expected to be ready for NHS use this year and 40m by the end of March 2021.

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