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CCGs will have to part-fund Stevens’ new GP burnout service


3 September 2015

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NHS England's new national GP support scheme will only be part-funded by NHS England, and will also have to be partly funded by clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) Simon Stevens, chief executive of the NHS, announced.
 

NHS England's new national GP support scheme will only be part-funded by NHS England, and will also have to be partly funded by clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) Simon Stevens, chief executive of the NHS, announced.
 
He said, at the NHS Expo in Manchester, that: "It is going to be funded by NHS England and CCGs. CCGs are already partly funding some of these schemes, what there hasn't been is a national set of standards for the offer that has to be made available. That's what we're doing and that's what we're going to back with cash from NHS England as well as from CCGs.
 
A spokesperson for NHS England said that the ratio between CCG and NHS England funding for the new scheme will be "worked through over the next few months".
 
Currently there are a few other schemes across the country that are similar, including one from Herts Valley CCG, North and East Hertfordshire CCG and Luton CCG, which are committed to funding a Practictioner Health Project (PHP) so GPs can confidentially refer themselves to speak to a specialist. 
 
However, Stevens' scheme will only focus on GPs, rather than practice nurses and other practice staff who are on the brink of burnout, and Hunt added: "We want to extend the offer to all NHS staff, but the particular targeting of the occupational health service for the secondom is GPs."
 
Responding to the Stevens' speech, Joe McGilligan, a GP partner in Surrey, said: "It's something we desperately needed and should have had 10 years ago, but it's just another thing CCGs will have to do without any resources. It's a great idea but the delivery is going to be incredibly difficult. Is there a surplus of trained occupational health doctors – with a special interest in primary care health – available for this service?"
 
Simon Stevens also said that "we are looking at different place-based incentives" to attract GPs to specific areas. "There is a debate about whether they do or do not work, there is also frankly an issue about making sure that, as doctors are coming out of medical schools in different parts of the country those medical schools are sending out a very strong signal about the value, professional status, the stimulation, flexibility that a career in general practice brings."
 
He added that the NHS wellbeing scheme, which he hopes will reduce the number of sickness days that NHS employees take, would make a "significant impact" on the £20bn efficiency savings the NHS needs to make.
 
Read more about the health scheme here.

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