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Sunday 23 October 2016
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NHS announces three voluntary MCP contract options

The NHS will be offering MCP vanguards three voluntary contract options

The NHS will be offering multi-speciality community provider (MCP) vanguards three voluntary contract options.

Ian Dodge, national director for commissioning strategy, said at the NHS England board meeting that they had been “working intensively” with six local systems, national stakeholders and partners, such as NHS improvement, to develop “three core approaches to contracting for an MCP.”

The first approach is the “virtual” MCP, brought about through an alliance contract.

The second is the “partially integrated” MCP contract, which will allow GPs to retain their general medical services (GMS) contract along side the MCP contract.

The third contract approach is the “fully integrated” model with a single whole population budget across all primary and community based services.

In Dodge’s report, he says these options “illustrate the spectrum of what is possible”, emphasising that all three contracts will be voluntary.

The report adds: “Working with six systems, NHS England is developing a draft of the fully and partially-integrated versions.

“Some areas may choose to opt for and stick with alliancing or the partially integrated model. Others may find this doesn’t enable them to secure enough of the benefits of the fully integrated MCP.

“It is too early to say; national and local thinking will continue to evolve.”

At the board meeting, Dodge added that the MCP contract framework describes the “core design” behind each of these contract options, including whole population budgetary arrangements, different options for organisational reform, and the different ways of securing a relationship with GPs.

Dodge added that the first full draft of the MCP contract would be released in September.

It was also announced that, while 8% of the country is currently supported by an MCP or PACS vanguard, the NHS is expecting this to expand up to 25% from 2017/18.

This will be supported through a dedicated new care models funding stream linked to the sustainability and transformation plan (STP) process.