FINANCE: The primary care trust is quickly developing plans to delegate payment-by-results based budgets to commissioning consortia.

The PCT has identified five locality consortia: Durham Dales, Sedgefield, Easington, Durham Chester Le Street and Derwentside.

They are all, along with a group covering Darlington, part of a single Department of Health pathfinder consortium.

The PCT said there are plans to assign specific staff and associated functions, and payment-by-results based budgets and activity to consortia by 1 April 2011; and running costs are to be agreed by the end of February 2011.