Practices missing thousands in trainee payments following 'incompetent' Capita takeover

Practices have been left without thousands of pounds of trainee salary reimbursements this month after payment services were outsourced to Capita.

GPC education, training and workforce subcommittee chairman Dr Krishna Kasaraneni
GPC education, training and workforce subcommittee chairman Dr Krishna Kasaraneni

GP leaders have again hit out out the privatised support services contractor after practices across England were left without the NHS England payments.

The BMA said it had reports of missing trainee salary reimbursements from practices in Wessex, Berkshire, Buckinghamshire, Oxfordshire, Humberside, Nottinghamshire, Derbyshire and the North East and elsewhere. 

NHS England has ordered Capita to urgently investigate the missing payments and 'prioritise remedial action'.

GPC education, training and workforce subcommittee chairman Dr Krishna Kasaraneni, said individual practices could be missing up to tens of thousands of pounds after this month’s reimbursements were not paid putting additional financial strain on already stretched services. Capita’s ‘incompetence’ was ‘extraordinary’, he said. 

The outsourcing firm took over the training payments this month. GP leaders have repeatedly criticised Capita since it began taking control of primary care support services in April in a £400m ten-year privatisation deal. 

Last month the the GPC passed a motion of no confidence in the firm after delays and mistakes in records transfers GPs said put patients at risk.

Plans by NHS England for a list cleansing programme run by Capita have also been criticised by GPs. 

GP leaders have condemned NHS England plans to outsource primary care support services and slash funding by £40m from a £100m budget since it was first revealed by GPonline in 2013.

Trainee salaries

Dr Kasaraneni said: ‘Capita's incompetence at delivering a service that they have signed up to is extraordinary.  

‘Practices up and down the country are now left without support for calculation of trainees salary and are not getting the salary reimbursed. Practices cannot absorb this level of financial drain at a time when they are stretched to the breaking point already. We have escalated this as a matter of priority to NHSE and anything less than immediate resolution will not be satisfactory.’

An NHS England spokesperson said: 'We have been alerted to this issue and have asked Capita to undertake an urgent investigation to urgently prioritise remedial action, and to determine root causes so it doesn’t happen again.

'We have also asked Capita to write to practices to explain the process that should be followed to claim reimbursement of the training grant and trainees salaries to ensure reimbursement is not delayed.'

A Capita spokeswoman said: 'This process involves a number of parties. The GP registrars complete a form and send this to Health Education England (HEE) with an accompanying payslip. HEE informs practices of their last salaries. Practices, not Primary Care Support England (PCSE), are responsible for paying GP registrars.

'PCSE is responsible for administering reimbursements. HEE forwards the registrar documentation to PCSE or the practice notifies PCSE by sending through the registrar's last payslip. The registrars are then input into the national system and then reimbursements can commence. Practices can view the details of reimbursements through a secure portal.

'There has recently been some confusion regarding the different elements of this process across all parties which has resulted in some delays. All reimbursements due will be paid during September and where necessary back dated to August.'

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