The Association of Independent Specialist Medical Accountants (AISMA) has published its response to the draft service specifications for primary care networks (PCNs).
The response focuses on the financial implications of the specifications, which relate largely to service delivery.
Specific points raised by AISMA include how and when money from the Investment and Impact Fund will be made available and how practices will agree to split the ongoing employment costs for additional roles to be recruited. Only 70% of these costs will be reimbursed. Other questions include how the significant project management time involved in the ongoing development of service delivery will be funded.
Other points in the AISMA response consider VAT on supply of staff working across the networks; employment contracts and how they relate to NHS Pension scheme membership; sub-contracting and the off payroll IR35 regulations; and existing work commissioned by local CCGs.
Response from NHS England received 20 January:
Many thanks for your considered response to our engagement on the draft Network DES service specifications. Please take this email as acknowledgement of receipt of your comments.
We would like to thank the large numbers of GPs, local medical committees (LMCs) and others who took the time to read and respond to the drafts. This is particularly true as the engagement period was necessarily shorter than planned, driven on one side by the timing of the general election and on the other by the need to give GPs good notice of their new contracts for April 2020.
This is the first time that we have shared draft GP contract materials for open engagement. Whatever the views of respondents about the specifications, we view such widespread engagement in a debate about how primary care networks (PCNs) develop as a positive change and a learning opportunity.
Having invited your feedback, we want to be absolutely clear that we have heard the views expressed. We will now carefully consider how to respond adequately, balancing the ambition to improve services for patients across England and the need to stabilise general practice, with what can realistically be delivered by PCNs in 2020/21.
A final version of the GP contract for 2020/21, informed by this engagement, will now be agreed as soon as possible through negotiations with the BMA GPC.
Primary Care Strategy and NHS Contracts Group
NHS England and NHS Improvement