PMS practices given contract ultimatum

The primary healthcare of 500,000 Suffolk residents would be put out to tender if negotiations over new PMS contracts in Suffolk fail, according to Suffolk LMC.

The move would be a last resort if there was no resolution of the dispute involving 48 PMS practices by the end of the extended deadline for negotiations, 31 March 2008.

The ongoing stand-off between Suffolk’s PCT and LMC is over target payments for referrals, described by the GPC as ‘immoral’.

Suffolk LMC member Dr Phillip Evans said: ‘We have been issued with termination of contract notices, so if we don’t get a resolution then the PCT would then be responsible for providing healthcare somehow.

‘Theoretically it was always the position. I’m sure neither we nor the PCT expect it to come to this.

‘There is a tradition of very high quality general practice in this area. There would be a lot of concern and resistance from the public. It would be completely foolish.’

Suffolk LMC chairman Dr Bill Robinson said the last resort was unlikely. ‘We are meeting with the chairman of the PCT to discuss the target payments. They have assured us they support our stance and don’t want any of this to happen.’

A Suffolk PCT spokeswoman said Suffolk GPs could ultimately go back to the GMS contract and that talk of tendering was ‘hypothesising’.

‘The PCT is clear that it is not putting contracts out to tender.’

GPC chairman Dr Laurence Buckman said: ‘Bullying practices is not the way to get them to improve and threatening to shut down practices holding some 500,000 patients is ridiculous. Obviously this is bad news for patients and it doesn’t make for good relations between the PCT and GPs.‘There is certainly the feeling that other PCTs will be watching Suffolk carefully to see what happens with this.’

Comment below and tell us what you think 

Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins


Already registered?

Sign in

Follow Us:

Just published

Vaccination tracker

UK COVID-19 vaccination programme tracker

GPs across the UK have led the largest-ever NHS vaccination programme in response...

RCGP chair Professor Martin Marshall

Hand PCNs control of primary care infrastructure funding, says RCGP

CCG funding for primary care infrastructure should be handed to PCNs when the bodies...

Professor Martin Marshall and Talking General Practice logo

Podcast: RCGP chair Professor Martin Marshall

Talking General Practice speaks to RCGP chair Professor Martin Marshall.

Dr Chaand Nagpaul

In-house review not enough to stop 'unjust' GMC referrals, warns BMA

Doctors' leaders have repeated calls for a full independent review of the GMC referral...


How widespread is long COVID in the UK?

Millions of people in the UK are living with long COVID. GPonline looks at the data...

COVID-19 vaccination sign

GP contract for autumn COVID-19 booster campaign due shortly

GP practices in England will be invited shortly to sign up for the COVID-19 autumn...