The negotiated changes to the 2018/19 GMS contract have now been published. The financial changes are fairly minimal, as follows: -

1. The global sum increases by 3%, from £85.35 per weighted patient to £87.92 per weighted patient.

2. The out-of-hours deduction from the global sum increases by around 2%, from £4.19922 per weighted patient to £4.281704 per weighted patient.

3. Although additional funding has been allocated to the QOF on a national level and the headline “payment per point” appears to have increased, the real value of QOF points to individual practices will remain practically unchanged, at £22.1418 per point per 1,000 patients (subject to adjustments for disease prevalence).

4. Payments for achieving childhood immunisation targets have been reduced, by 9.634% for 2-year-old immunisation payments and by 1.5625% for 5-year-old immunisation payments.

5. There have been changes to the target groups for vaccinations and immunisations for meningitis, hepatitis B and PCV.

6. Certain payments for vaccinations and immunisations will increase by 2.65%, from £9.80 per vaccination to £10.06 per vaccination. This increase applies to vaccinations for meningitis B, meningitis ACWY, meningitis C completing dose, rotavirus, shingles, hepatitis B, HPV completing dose and MMR for those aged 16 and over.

7. There will be no increase to the payments for seasonal influenza, childhood influenza, pneumonia or pertussis, which will all remain at £9.80 per vaccination; or for PCV, which will remain at £15.02 per vaccination.

8. Seniority payments will decrease by a further 19% for each level of payment. This is part of the programme designed to phase out all seniority payments by 31st March 2020.

9. The amount that may be claimed as reimbursement for sickness and maternity cover will increase by 1% to £1,751.52 per week from the third week onwards. For paternity leave and for the first 2 weeks of maternity leave, the reimbursement will also increase by 1%, to £1,143.06 per week.

10. All GMS practices will receive a payment in respect of transition to the NHS e-Referral Service equal to 17p per patient.

If you would like to discuss the impact on your practice finances of any of the above issues, please contact Andrew Goddard by telephone on 01704 215450 or by e-mail to andrew@forshaws.org.uk.