There were significant rises in a number of key indicators in the latest Barometer survey of primary care trust chief executives. Faith in the national IT programme has continued to rise, and there has been a big boost in optimism on keeping a grip on elective activity. The only noticeable fall was a lack of confidence in the benefits of plurality.

There were significant rises in a number of key indicators in the latest Barometer survey of primary care trust chief executives. Faith in the national IT programme has continued to rise, and there has been a big boost in optimism on keeping a grip on elective activity. The only noticeable fall was a lack of confidence in the benefits of plurality.

We also asked about provision and more than two-thirds expected to be still in full control of services by the end of the next financial year - only 5 per cent said they would have divested provision entirely.

In terms of independent sector commissioning expertise, more than three-quarters focused on information and data while very few expected to take advantage of 'end to end' commissioning.

The Barometer survey is based on a panel of 90 PCT chief executives and is carried out every two months. The panel scores 1-10 against key indicators. It was set up in association with NHS Networks (www.networks.nhs.uk).