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Single budget could kick start integrated services

Dr Michael Dixon, Chairman, NHS Alliance

Moving care out of hospitals and giving General practice more control may result in a new approach to funding that will see the end of separate budgets for primary and secondary care at national and local level, said Dr Michael Dixon, Chairman, NHS Alliance and Interim President, NHS Clinical Commissioners.

Posted: 19 September 2013

“I think we will need to look at future pioneers with a single integrated budget. It will cause all sorts of ructions through the system but unless we are prepared to look at it and see if it leads to better things we will never know,” he said. Radical changes may be needed to the GP contract but he said “although I’m not calling for an end of the GP contract I think we need to think about some experimentation in that direction because separate primary and secondary care budgets are not sustainable,” he told Primary Care Today.

“Clinical Commissioning Groups are here to create something different, to get more for less, a quart out of a pint pot. The only way you can do that is by developing General practice and Primary Care and therefore commissioners have got to have a handle on that otherwise they are not able to do their job of innovating and redesigning care. Changing General practice is a key part of that. Commissioners have an awful lot of work on but for many of them developing General practice is seen as a top priority.”

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