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NHS England sets out PCN carrots and sticks


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NHS England sets out PCN carrots and sticks

NHS England has written to its primary care leads and to CCGs with an update on primary care networks.

The letter provides a summary of recent announcements that PCNs may also find useful. A consultation is underway on the five service specifications that are to become core requirements of the network contract DES in 2020/21: structured medications review and optimisation, enhanced health in care homes, anticipatory care, and early cancer diagnosis. Draft specifications need to be ready in time for the annual round of GP contract negotiations which start in October. Also expected with next year’s contract is the network dashboard, the tool PCNs will use to measure their progress in meeting the new service specs, and the impact and investment fund (IIF), the “additional funding to PCNs which go further and faster to deliver the national service specifications”. The letter also provides links to recently published guidance on reimbursement rules for additional roles and data sharing agreements. Tracy Green, PCC’s lead for PCNs, said: “While details about how the IIF will work remain sketchy for now, PCNs should welcome the fact that NHS England continues to balance the must-dos in the DES with incentives to those PCNs prepared to go further. It’s also good to see CCGs being strongly urged to redistribute any underspend from the additional roles reimbursement scheme to PCNs keen on rapid workforce expansion.”