Swine flu emergency financial package 'very close' for practices

The GPC and the DoH are 'very close' to agreeing an emergency financial package for GPs in response to swine flu, according to the GPC.

GPC deputy chairman Dr Richard Vautrey
GPC deputy chairman Dr Richard Vautrey

Discussions are continuing over whether to suspend the QOF locally, nationally or by SHA, and how to compensate GPs for the huge vaccination programme ahead.

The GPC also welcomed the introduction of a dedicated flu helpline, as it says NHS Direct has been unable to cope with calls.

The GPC hopes the helpline will help patients with mild symptoms avoid contacting their GP but warn it will not relieve pressure on GPs.

GPC deputy chairman Dr Richard Vautrey said: ‘It's certainly helpful but I don't think it will take the pressure off GPs in any shape or form.

‘We hope the discussions with the departments are finalised as soon as practically possible because no-one knows how this pandemic is going to work out and we must have clear plans for all eventualities.'

Dr Vautrey said Scotland's NHS 24 appeared to be coping better, offering more self-care advice, preventing patients with mild symptoms from calling GP surgeries.

tom.ireland@haymarket.com

VISIT OUR SWINE FLU RESOURCE CENTRE

 


More news from 17 July

Swine flu hotline and website launch to ease pressure on practices
Think tank calls for £20 fee for GP appointments

MPs want prevention in QOF
Health committee to investigate commissioning
Nurses and healthcare staff to be trained by practices

 

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