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Financial Incentives: Secondary Care Referrals

Volume 487: debated on Tuesday 10 February 2009

19. To ask the Secretary of State for Health what guidance he provides to primary care trusts and GPs on the use of financial incentives to reduce numbers of referrals to secondary care. (255413)

General Practitioners have a duty to provide the best care for each patient. Where primary care trusts (PCTs) agree local incentive schemes these should not cut across this duty or restrict patient care. Any incentive scheme must help patients get the right treatment in the most appropriate setting.

The Department’s “Care and Resource Utilisation” guidance (published in December 2006) set out how PCTs and clinicians can work together to improve the appropriateness of care that patients receive.