The Care Quality Commission (CQC) is cutting the pay of inspection team GP special advisors to save money, despite increasing practice fees by 600% in two years.
The pay cut is part of a new contract to be imposed on all CQC advisers, including 548 GP inspectors, from September 19.
GP leaders have said the move shows how little value the CQC places on their specialist workforce and raised questions about how the 600% increase in practice fees over the last two years has been spent.
The new contract arrangement is being implemented to mitigate further costs to the CQC, which found that only 13% of its GP special adviser workforce was being paid the holiday pay they were owed.
With the rest of the workforce set to claim back dated holiday pay, the CQC is cutting their basic pay from £540 to £482 per inspection.
A CQC spokesperson told Pulse: “When we reviewed our payment structure for specialist advisors, it became clear that only a small number received holiday pay while a larger number did not.
“To ensure CQC meets its legal obligations, holiday pay is now included the daily rate.
“This means that for the majority who did not receive holiday pay in addition to the fee, there is no change, but for minority who did, this is a reduction in the total received.”
Dr Robert Morley, chair of the GPC’s contracts and regulation subcommittee, told Pulse: “It’s a pity that CQC doesn’t recognise the value of recruiting high quality GP advisors. I’d have thought that cutting their pay would be the last thing they’d want to do but clearly not.
“It begs the question as to what CQC is now spending its money on following its massive hike in GP registration fees. They’ve probably decided it needs to go on more expensive lawyers following the recent embarrassments over information governance and in the High Court.”