‘Key asks’ for Health and Care Bill

Alongside the British Medical Association, British Dental Association, Pharmaceutical Services Negotiating Committee, and National Community Hearing Association – and under the umbrella of the Optometric Fees Negotiating Committee – ABDO has set out its ‘key asks’ from the Health and Care Bill currently before parliament.

They are:

  • Statutory places for primary care sectors (GPs, dentists, pharmacists, primary eye care and primary hearing care) in Integrated Care Partnerships (ICPs)*
  • These to be remunerated to ensure parity of availability and voice with NHS trust, NHS staff, social care and public health colleagues in strategic thinking and decision-making
  • Right of existing statutory local representative committees (as the voice of the primary care professions locally) to put forward nominations for those roles
  • Right to be heard: public duty of transparency and accountability for integrated care boards and ICPs to explain in writing in public when they choose not to heed advice from local primary care bodies

Debbie McGill, ABDO head of policy and public affairs, said: “Without full primary care input at strategic level, it is almost certain that the ambitions of the Bill and the NHS Long Term Plan for integrated care and transformation will not succeed to their full potential, if at all.

“It is vital that primary eye health care is represented, to recognise the quality of care that is delivered within communities, the opportunities to shift the balance of care from secondary to primary, and the value in preventative eye health care,” added Debbie.

* ICPs are alliances of NHS providers that work together to deliver care by agreeing to collaborate rather than compete to deliver efficient, joined up care for patients. ICPs include hospitals, community services, social care and primary care providers.