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Practices wait as rescue fund stays unspent

by in BMA, Funding, News

NewsA £16 million rescue fund for general practice is failing to find its way to surgeries, it was claimed yesterday.

Just 16 out of 40 local medical committees stated that money had found its way to the front-line in a survey by the British Medical Association.

Some £40 million has been allocated to the resilience fund over four years – but already NHS England has admitted that £11 million of this year’s £16 million has not been spent.

The BMA says it is likely that even less of the money has been spent.

BMA GP committee chair Dr Chaand Nagpaul said he has written to NHS England calling on it to deal with a “serious operational failure.”

He said: “It is completely unacceptable that the BMA’s survey shows that a postcode lottery has developed, with wide disparities over where the funding is being practically delivered.

“This is scandalous given that CCGs were allocated these funds in the autumn and under the Government’s promised plan, practices should have been notified by December if they were eligible, with the resources supposedly arriving this month.

“In many cases these deadlines are being completely missed.”

He added: “This funding must be retained and ring-fenced for its intended purpose and not lost from clinical commissioning group budgets due to their failure to spend it in this financial year.”

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