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CCGs ‘must be in control of 50% of budget by mid-2012’

20 January 2012

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CCGs will need to take over at least 50% of the commissioning budget by mid-summer 2012 to achieve full authorisation, the Chair of the NHS Alliance has warned.

Dr Michael Dixon, a Devon GP, told MiP it is “frankly not good enough” that some CCGs have only seen a small devolvement of commissioning funds at this late stage.

“PCTs have to let go of this money and quickly. There is only six months to go before the CCG authorisation process opens.

Dr Dixon said it would be “very difficult for CCGs to get their knees under desks and do anything substantial” if they haven’t taken over at least half of the commissioning budget by mid-summer this year.

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Failing to do so could cost CCGs come April 2013.

“If PCTs do not quicken the pace of the devolvement of commissioning funds to CCGs, April 2013 will see the dawn of two equally grim scenarios,” he said.

“Either CCGs will not get authorised at all or they will only be authorised to run commissioning duties in part – with the rest being left to the NCB, bringing no change from the previous structure.”

Since writing his New Year letter to the NHS Alliance members, Dr Dixon told MiP the small number of “disillusioned” CCG leaders threatening to walk away from their commissioning duties has grown to “quite a large number”.

“The system is so oppressive that these GPs don’t dare talk to anyone about their worries for fear of damage, to not only them, but their CCG as well,” he said.