I was interested to read 'Divide opens over PCG governance' (News, page 3, 20 August), but take exception to Derek Day's comment that he welcomed the paragraph saying senior health authority finance managers could be co-opted on to primary care group boards. I assume he is referring to paragraph 51 of HSC 1998/139.

This states that the board may achieve financial expertise through co- option of the lead financial manager on to the governing board. From this, Mr Day seems to assume that the lead financial manager will be a senior HA finance manager, but most groups are likely to want to have their own financial expertise through a person working for the group and not one who will have split loyalties between the HA and the PCG. Many capable people in primary care have the trust and respect of other professionals in PCGs, and the way forward is likely to be easier if these people move the agenda on while still maintaining the key financial objectives.

Frank Cooke

Practice director

Shiv Lodge Medical Centre