Implementing GP Commissioning suggests that the Health and Social Care Bill’s proposals to abolish every Primary Care Trust (PCT) by 2013 could lead to the new structure replicating the existing system in all but name. The report says that by slowing down the proposed reforms, the potential to deliver real and lasting transformation in the NHS is enormous.
The research is based on interviews with the GP leaders or managers of 16 ‘pathfinder’ consortia and with other experts. It looks at different ways in which consortia could work and the factors which they and the Government will need to focus on if the policy is to be a success. The study finds that the Government has lost many potential supporters inside and outside the NHS. This is because they have pressed ahead with handing more responsibility to GPs without winning backing for the policy from them. The study also emphasised the need to ensure GPs have the necessary skills to run such highly-complex operations before the transition to GP commissioning takes places.