Changes to the GP quality and outcomes framework unveiled this week by NHS Employers reflect the government's intention to improve patient access to general practice.
Two new patient experience indicators for 2007-08 will measure the percentage of patients able to obtain an appointment at their GP surgery within 48 hours and the percentage of those able to book an appointment more than two days ahead.
These indicators will be worth 58.5 points, funded by 38.5 points taken from the holistic, clinical and organisation domains and 20 points from the existing patient experience domain.
NHS Employers' joint-chair of the framework review team Dr Adrian Jacobs said: "The continuing success of the framework depends on it being able to adapt to reflect developments in patient care and changes in the delivery of services.
"We are still discussing the full details of how the indicators will work in practice with the British Medical Association GPs committee and we will be publishing amendments to the statement of financial entitlements shortly."
Minor amendments have also been made to some clinical indicators in stroke, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, palliative care, mental health, asthma, depression, chronic kidney disease, atrial fibrillation and smoking.
Thresholds for payments for existing indicators remain unchanged.