National GP contract blocks localism, says top Tory

The GP contract is an 'institutional restraint' on local innovation and integration, according to the Conservative chairman of the House of Commons health select committee.

Stephen Dorrell: health select committee chairman

Stephen Dorrell, (Con, Charnwood) said the nationally-agreed deal was an institutional restraint on the principle that there was no one-size-fits-all approach to delivering healthcare.

‘We are trying to deliver locally integrated services respecting the voices of communities and patients, within a reasserted national contract for general practice which is separate from the local arrangements for the delivery of community services,' Mr Dorrell told the NHS Alliance conference in London. 'That makes no kind of sense at all.’

Both Mr Dorrell and Labour shadow health minister Liz Kendall (Lab, Leicester West) agreed that involving and empowering patients and breaking down barriers between service users, providers and commissioners was key to health service integration and coping with pressure on the system.

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