Connecting for Health has prevented a PCT from insisting that GP practices signed up to GP Systems of Choice (GPSoC) must eventually move to a local service provider solution.
North Yorkshire and York PCT told practices that signing up to GPSoC meant they were committing themselves to migrate to the fully integrated LSP solution when available. The strategic health authority’s IT strategy aims to move all practices on non-LSP solutions onto TPP SystmOne by 2011.
A spokesperson for CfH told EHI Primary Care: “The GP Systems of Choice contracts do not commit GP practices to migrating to alternative clinical IT solutions whether provided by another GPSoC supplier or a LSP. The local discussions about the implementation of integrated solutions are part of an important dialogue that needs to take place to agree what is best for the delivery of patient care in a modern NHS.
“North Yorkshire PCT has said it will remove the quoted statement from their policy document.”
CfH stepped in to the dispute between the PCT and local medical committee after being contacted by GPs. The LMC has protested that the trust’s plans would force practices to switch systems against their will.
The GPSoC initiative has been introduced by the Department of Health to allay GPs’ concerns over system choice and CfH wants PCTs to sign up as many practices as possible by March next year.
A CfH spokesperson told EHI Primary Care that so far 25% of PCTs have signed GPSoC call off agreements for some of their practices. Call-off agreements can last up to four years.
The spokesperson added: “GPSoC will be the main source of funding for GP clinical system licences from 2008/9 so we expect PCTs will sign up the majority of practices by the end of March 2008.”
CfH said PCTs have been putting in place local governance arrangements for implementing the GPSoC contracts and the agency says it will shortly publish a draft PCT-practice agreement on theGPSoC web pages. The final details of the PCT-practice agreement are being negotiated with the BMA.
CfH says it is also working with GP suppliers to achieve accreditation of hosted solutions under GPSoC. A spokesperson added: “Three suppliers are actively engaged in the accreditation process – CSC (TPP), EMIS and InPractice. We are working with the suppliers to ensure that they become accredited in advance of the deadline for Direct Enhanced Services Component 4 payments at the end of March 2008.”
CfH says that if practices or PCTs have further questions they can contact the GPSoC team at email@example.com or their PCT, SHA, or supplier as appropriate.
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