GP pensions proposals ‘too little too late’, BMA warns

8th December 2022 by NASGP

GP pensions proposals ‘too little too late’, BMA warns

The Government has launched a new GP pension consultation in light of dire warnings around a workforce exodus, Pulse reports.

Ministers proposed to introduce:

  • New retirement flexibilities.
  • Aligning the timing of CPI inflation rates used for revaluing pension benefits and the annual allowance tax calculation.
  • Scheme access for primary care networks (PCNs).
  • Technical updates to member contributions provisions.

Dr Tony Goldstone, the BMA’s national clinician advisor on pay and pensions, warned in a tweet that it was ‘too little too late’ and found nothing of interest on annual allowance or lifetime allowance.

Pulse noted the proposal to allow members of the 1995 scheme to partially retire at 55 while continuing to work and accrue further pension in the 2015 Scheme.

The BMA said the proposals fell well short of expectations. Dr Vishal Sharma, BMA pensions committee chair, said: “We need to consider the detail within the consultation but on the face of it, these proposed changes appear to be too little, too late. Although they implement some of the immediate mitigations that the BMA has been calling for, they fall well short of the long-term solution that the NHS desperately needs.”

Dr Richard Fieldhouse, NASGP chair, said:“It’s perplexing that the Government has come in at this late stage with such a completely underpowered consultation which, even if all proposals were to be enacted, would do little to encourage or enable doctors to increase clinical capacity.

“We very much hope that this is simply the starter to a new round of consultations, rather than this being the main course.”

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