The must read stories and talking points in health

The long game

In an in-depth interview with HSJ, Jeremy Hunt has set out wide ranging plans for the next phase of his time as health secretary.

As HSJ editor Alastair McLellan notes: “He knows the length of his tenure means he has a rare opportunity to leave a legacy and wants to stay in post for another ‘two to three years’ to deliver it.”

Mr Hunt said he would “love” be in post until 2019, surpassing the stints of Aneurin Bevan and Lord Fowler (Mr Hunt has been SoS since September 2012).

In the interview Mr Hunt also revealed:

“His vision may prove to be wildly ambitious,” says Mr McLellan. “But Mr Hunt is used to being underestimated by the NHS and its observers, and the scepticism of others is unlikely to push him off course.”

‘Scandalous, inexplicable, wholly unjustified’

That was the BMA’s take on the Care Quality Commission’s proposed fee increases for providers in 2017-18 – specifically over the plan for some GP practices to pay up to 76 per cent more than they currently do.

The CQC’s consultation document sets out options for increasing fees next financial year, including increases of nearly 50 per cent for NHS trusts and foundations trusts. It describes a lighter touch approach to increases for social care providers.

Earlier this year the CQC decided to move to “full cost recovery” from providers over two years

Mixed bag for GP training

Health Education England has filled more GP training places than ever before but failed to reach its target for 2016.

The national training body has filled 2,989 GP trainee places for 2016, against a mandated target to recruit 3,250 this year.

Earlier this week HSJ reported that HEE is to receive an additional £20m on top of its existing budget to help support the planned increase in the number of GPs. NHS England pledged £206m to implement workforce measures from the GP Forward View.