A pilot of the government's proposals to overhaul GP commissioning is to be launched in Cambridge, it has been revealed.
The study will see doctors handed real budgets and given the opportunity to boost their income by keeping 10% of any money made.
Participating physicians will be expected to return between 30% and 50% of any surplus to PCTs and reinvest up to 70% in patient care.
Those hoping to profit from the scheme would be expected to make an "at-risk" deposit to the PCT, which may or may not be later used to cover overspends.
Practice budgets for doctors taking part will be set using the PBC national toolkit, the local prescribing formula and the Carr-Hill formula, with individual centres deciding their own level of fiscal responsibility.
Clusters of practices will be given the right to appoint a lead centre or form a company, joint venture, limited liability partnership or provident society.
Seven clusters of GPs have expressed interest in signing up so far.
"I am not sure this scheme is entirely new or only happening in Cambridge. Similar scheme based on networks of practices already happening in Tower Hamlets. The only slight difference is that we have arranged services in packages, had them costed and money made available on the basis of achievement threshholds" – Tina Chigbo, Tower Hamlets