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Thursday, 9 October 2008

New GP contracts have delivered "eye watering" pay rises for doctors, while some services to patients have declined, a damning report by MPs says.

GPs given 'eye watering' pay rises for less work, say MPs
Article in the Telegraph


"Family doctors' hours have been cut and their productivity has fallen at the same time as some received up to 58 per cent salary increases, according to the Commons Public Accounts Committee.

The Department of Health's failure to properly estimate how much the deal would cost has also led to an overspend of £1.8 billion, the report says.

MPs on the committee also criticise the newly introduced system to link GP pay to performance, which its says allowed family doctors to earn salaries much greater than expected.

Controversy has surrounded the new contracts since they were introduced in 2004.

They were widely criticised for handing GPs large pay rises at the same time as allowing them to opt out of out-of-hours cover.

The report also attacks the contracts for failing to significantly improve access to GP services or increase the number of family doctors in deprived areas.

Edward Leigh, the committee's chairman, said that the new deal "has so far failed to live up to expectations".

"Partners in GP practices are now putting in less time and their productivity has decreased. Only their pay is burgeoning, having increased on average by an eye-watering 58 per cent since 2003," he added."

The incompetence of the Department of Health never fails to amaze. They are certainly no match for the medical profession's skilled negotiators...)o:

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