Campaigns. It is important that I continue to know the strength of feeling on an issue and I prefer to respond to every inquiry, but the sheer size of campaign correspondence means that it is hard to justify to the tax payer the cost and time taken for individual written replies, so regrettably I will no longer reply to every item of campaign correspondence.  I will  post a response to the campaign on the "Responses to campaigns" page of my website.

I am sorry to do this, as it is rather impersonal, but can see no other way of maintaining a good service for all my constituents unless I approach campaigns this way.


18 OCT 2017

General Practice Indemnity

Thank you for taking the time to write to me about the cost of GP indemnity.

I understand your concern on this matter and hope the following information on this matter from the Department of Health is of interest:

The Government is committed to building a thoroughly patient-driven NHS. Enabling patients to make claims of clinical or GP negligence is central to this, as it maintains trust and accountability in the NHS. That is why, in February 2017, the Lord Chancellor announced a change to the personal injury discount rate.
However, the Department of Health has recognised the potential consequences this change may have for GPs. GPs must feel supported by the Government and the Health Service, and the Government has stated in the General Practice Forward View, that GPs will not bear the cost of increased indemnity, the Government will. The Government invested an additional £30 million into covering indemnity costs for 2016-17, and a further sum of approximately £30 million will be made available for the next financial year.
In light of the increasing costs of claims since February 2017 the Department for Health and NHS England are developing a policy to cover rising indemnity costs, and will continue to work closely with GPs and the Medical Defence Organisations to ensure that appropriate funding is provided sustainably, for the long term. In October 2017, the Health Secretary announced that a long-term solution is in development, which will be of great support to doctors throughout the country. It will take at least 12 to 18 months to develop.
NHS England has recently announced plans to help out-of-hours GP services throughout the winter by making an extra £10 million available for indemnity costs. This scheme is running from October to April 2018, and will enable doctors to commit to more out of hours sessions, which are so important for patient care in the winter. The Government is developing a long-term answer to the issue of rising indemnity costs.

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