This update is applicable to practices who are leasing their premises from Community Health Partnerships (CHP) or NHS Property Services (NHSPS).
Urgent – Occupancy Agreement letters
We are aware that NHSPS may be sending practices Occupancy Agreement Letters and Occupancy Change Notices for completion and return. These documents should be treated with extreme caution, and professional advice sought from an appropriately qualified legal adviser with healthcare/general practice knowledge and experience before you sign anything.
LMC support with premises Issues
NHS England/CCGs have a duty to consult with the LMC over issues that impact general practice, including premises/estates issues. Londonwide LMCs has set up a GP Premises Liaison Group with Surrey & Sussex LMCs and Barking & Havering LMCs to meet regularly with NHS England London Region, CHP and NHSPS to discuss strategic, policy and operational issues. We are aware that there are ongoing issues where practices need individual support and we have agreed with NHS England London/CCGs, CHP and NHSPS that they should encourage you to contact our GP Support team for confidential assistance and advice before they take action. They may also confidentially highlight to GP support out of meetings where a practice may need urgent individual assistance; this may result in you receiving a call from one of our GP Support team. Please contact us if you have any concerns regarding this.
London policy for financial assistance with service charges and premises running costs
NHS England London and London CCGs have developed a policy with LMCs for accessing financial support for service charges and premises running costs. Please contact GP support on email@example.com for more information. It is also worth noting there is a gateway with eligibility criteria including: full disclosure of income and expenditure on an open book and annual basis, and production of an action plan to demonstrate how you will optimise your income and reduce expenditure over the next 12 months.
Such arrangements should only be entered into where you are entirely satisfied that when the transitional period ends you are not inadvertently left having to meet increased costs without the benefit of increased funding. In our view, and the BMA’s, that transitional arrangements should be avoided. More permanent solutions which align a practice’s funding to their costs are needed.
Practices should only make payments to the extent that they are both satisfied as to the legal basis upon which they are payable and their accuracy, and set aside/accrue funds while you resolve your concerns. We are aware that this issue is causing practices significant stress. If NHSPS take action to enforce charges against you please contact firstname.lastname@example.org immediately; you may also wish to contact the GPC on email@example.com.
Last updated : 02 Sep 2018