More money for GPs as 2021/22 contract details revealed
NHS England & Improvement and the BMA’s GP Committee have agreed funding increases for practices and primary care network staff as updates to the GP contract for 2021/22 were announced last week.
It was confirmed that a previously agreed uplift in Additional Roles Reimbursement Scheme (ARRS) funding – from a maximum of £430m in 2020/21 to a maximum of £746m in 2021/22 – will go ahead.
As per the five-year deal agreed in January 2019, practices will receive an uplift to their global sum to allow for a 2.1 per cent pay and expenses increase, for population growth, and for additional funding for vaccinations and immunisations.
There is a further opportunity for clinical pharmacists that remain on the Clinical Pharmacist in General Practice scheme to transfer to PCNs and be reimbursed under the ARRS. Limits on the number of pharmacy technicians that can be reimbursed will be removed.
Four new PCN service specifications will be delayed due to the need for “pandemic prioritisation”, said the BMA.
Announcing the details in a letter sent to GP practices and PCN clinical directors on January 21, NHS England thanks GPs in “this year... like no other” and highlights the need to support the workforce “who have worked incredibly hard for many months”.
The funding boost is in marked contrast to the situation facing community pharmacy contractors, who are still waiting to have Covid costs covered and to hear whether their £370m cash advance is to be written off.