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Larger GP practices face regulatory fee hike

Smaller practices will see a fall in their fees, says CQC

Adrian O'Dowd

Thursday, 05 April 2018

Larger GP practices will have to pay more for their regulatory fee for the Care Quality Commission, it has been announced, but smaller practices’ fee is to drop.

The CQC has announced its fees for providers to pay to cover the costs of their regulation for 2018-19 in new guidance, which comes into effect from the start of this month.

For the updated regulatory fees, a new formula is being used based on the number of registered patients in a practice rather than the previous banding system.

Under the new formula, an NHS GP provider with two locations and patient list sizes of 10,000 and 8,300 at each of the locations will see their fee increase from £8,371 to £11,449.

At the same time, an NHS GP provider with one location and a patient list size of 5,200 will see their fee decrease from £4,526 to £3,473.

A contract change last year meant that GPs’ CQC fees were reimbursed in full to avoid having an impact on a practice’s funding and it is expected that the new fee structure will not change this.

The price changes follow a public consultation held last year in which the CQC made proposals that would affect NHS trusts, NHS GPs and community social care providers.

CQC’s regulatory functions are funded both by fees paid by providers and by grant-in-aid from the Department of Health.

A spokesperson for the CQC said: “Fees that providers pay have reached full chargeable cost recovery for most of our providers. We consulted on our fees scheme to ensure that fees continue to be charged and distributed fairly. We also sought to make sure that the fees scheme captures current developments within each sector.”

The only sector that would see an overall increase in fees was the community social care sector, said the regulator.

Other examples of the fee changes include:

  • an NHS trust with a turnover of £120m will see its fee decrease from £158,902 to £85,200
  • an NHS trust with a turnover of £681m will see its fee increase from £322,249 to £483,510
  • a community social care provider with one location and 15 service users will see their fee decrease from £2,192 to £926
  • a community social care provider with three locations and 50, 100 and 45 service users at each of the locations will see their fee increase from £6,093 to £9,643.
For all other sectors the fee scheme remains unchanged.

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