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BMA Announces New GP Contract Agreement for 2017/18

The British Medical Association’s General Practitioners Committee,NHS England and the Government have reached agreement on changes to the general practice contract that will benefit both GPs and patients.

From 1st April 2017, the new contract will take place and will see investment of around £238 million going into the contract for 2017/18. In addition, £157 million from an earlier earmarked plan will be transferred into core GP funding so that family doctors can be more flexible in how they care for the most weak.

Every year NHS England and the BMA conduct discussions on revisions to the GP contract. Here are listed some key changes made for the 2017/18 GP Contract for England.

  • £30m to cover increases in indemnity costs.
  • Provide significant improvements to sickness and maternity absence cover arrangements.
  • Direct reimbursement of Care Quality Commission registration fees
  • Bring extra funding for the care of people with learning disabilities
  • Cut bureaucratic workload over unplanned admissions
  • Provide funding to cover the extra work caused by the new system for transferring patient records run by Capital.
  • Improve the GP retainer scheme

National Health Service (NHS) England has also agreed with the BMA that a group will be set up after April 2017 to examine the future of the payment arrangements known as “QOF”.

The chair of BMA General Practitioners Committee (GPC), Dr Chaand Nagpaul is very pleased that BMA have reached an agreement that offers important and significant improvements to the contract.

Dr Nagpaul said the changes in the GP contract will provide much needed stability and relief for GP practices by lessening bureaucracy and providing financial support in key areas. It is promising that NHS England were willing to listen to GPs' concerns in many of these areas and work with the BMA’s GP committee to provide workable solutions.

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