Su Stone, a Freelance GP working in chambers and a commissioning GP, shares her thoughts and experiences of working as a Sessional GP in a CCG.
Clinical commissioning groups are the government’s new publicity stunt; a way of corrupting the NHS; backdoor privatisation; the beginning of the end of healthcare as we know it, isn’t it? In short, no, and in my opinion it’s that kind of scaremongering being touted by the vocal minority that is damaging the best opportunity we have of improving services for our patients.
The King’s Fund sums it up nicely: “Commissioning is the planning and purchasing of NHS services to meet the health needs of a local population”. Simple as that – decide what our local population needs, go out and buy it. It’s only privatisation if you buy services from private companies; it’s only the beginning of the end if we all stick our heads in the sand and don’t help it to succeed. It isn’t scary, and it certainly isn’t new – GPs have been commissioning since 1991.