Sep 15 2012

Harrow Docs may get bonuses for NOT Referring Patients

The Daily Mail has an article today which refers to a proposal by Harrow Primary Care Trust, where it seems that GPs may get upto £4 per patient if they follow a strict set of criteria. Refer the wrong patients, and that ‘bonus’ is cut to £1 or £2. Each time a doctor sends a patient for a hospital referral, the local NHS is charged for the cost of their treatment.

The aim is to reduce the number of referrals from doctors: less referrals means less expense for Primary Care Trusts; pushing doctors to only refer patients who tick all the right boxes is something that the Harrow PCT are looking to achieve. But surely – and the British Medical Association would agree – it’s ‘unethical’ to pay doctors for effectively withholding treatment.

These numbers aren’t small: an average GP surgery with 6,500 patients can make up to £26,000 in incentives if they take all the ‘right measures.’

You can read the whole article here, on the Daily Mail’s website.


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