Commissioning Consortium




WHITE PAPER BULLETIN No 9
Health and Social Care Bill Update

On the 14th October Pulse reported that Clinical Commissioning Groups ("CCGs") representing several thousand GPs across London had signed a multi-million pound deal with private consultants "handpicked by NHS bosses" to help support the roll out of GP Commissioning. It was reported that 31 CCGs had signed contracts for a programme of "intensive organisational support" for commissioning from the likes of KPMG, PricewaterhouseCoopers, Capita and McKinsey which have formed a joint partnership with the RCGPs Centre for Commissioning and business consultancy Ashridge Alliance. The partnership will be advising CCGs ahead of authorisation.

Commissioning partners are said to include Ernest and Young, Capsticks Solicitors, Binder Dijker Otte and the Entrusted Health Partnership. There can be no doubt whatsoever about the standing of the consultancies who will, according to Pulse, offer CCGs coaching, leadership plans, resources and how-to guides, 360 degree feedback, self-assessment tools and organisational development plans. However Lockharts, who as a matter of policy do not accept instructions from NHS London or PCTs, whether within the London area or outside, believe that the "roll out" of commissioning advice described above will almost certainly have a number of "one size fits all" elements. These may very well be prescriptive in a way which may not suit the individual natures of practices participating, whether willingly or otherwise, in CCGs.

Lockharts are also concerned that the planned set up of CCGs may well seek to impose contractual burdens on practitioners, many of which may be felt to be unacceptable on an individual basis and none of which have yet been predicated publicly in any discussions about the new single GP contract.

Undoubtedly clinicians involved in CCGs will need to skill up in order to commission high quality care, but it would be very easy for this work up to override the individual needs and understandings of clinicians.

To represent the personal interests of practices and practitioners, Lockharts are able to provide an advisory service. This service, available to both groups of GPs being asked to work within CCGs and also to LMCs across the country, will analyse the proposals for CCG work insofar as they affect the contractual position of GPs, both at present and, when information is known, under a new single core contract.

Lockharts have little doubt that arrangements, similar to those being made in NHS London, are likely to be replicated at least to some extent across England and thus all practitioners will come under threat.


For further information about the range of assistance that can be made available to practices lining up, or being lined up, in the CCG world,
please contact Andrew Lockhart-Mirams on alm@lockharts.co.uk
www.lockharts.co.uk






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