Magazine article Public Finance

Patients' Views Could Affect GP Out-of-Hours Deals

Magazine article Public Finance

Patients' Views Could Affect GP Out-of-Hours Deals

Article excerpt

Locally negotiated deals for out-of-hours GP cover could be affected by the results of a revamped patient survey.

More than 5 million patients will be asked to rate their GP practice in the third annual GP patient survey, which this year has been expanded to include questions on weekend and evening cover.

The survey, posted to 5.7 million registered patients on January 5, also seeks peoples views on the overall service provided by their practice, including quality of reception staff and telephone consultations.

Patients' answers will continue to affect payment to GPs for hitting access targets, and this year might also be used to adjust payments for out-of-hours care, which are negotiated between primary care trusts and providers.

The Department of Health said previous surveys had resulted in GP practices changing the way they provided care, citing the increased number of practices that now offer extended opening hours. …

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