04 May 2011

GP commissioning faces a number of hurdles, including how to ensure that patients and the public have a meaningful say in the decisions about allocating scarce resources locally. Primary Care Trusts (PCTs) had a patchy record in engaging with the public, although there were some examples of good practice.

The government's plans to replace PCTs with GP consortia have been criticised for diluting patient and public engagement with commissioning even further. These issues were discussed at a recent Nuffield Trust seminar, after which Nuffield Trust Senior Fellow Ruth Thorlby spoke to Don Redding, Director of Policy, National Voices, an umbrella group for health and social care charities.

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