Commissioners in north London have awarded an extended primary care services contract to a private provider over the GP federation that was already providing the service, HSJ has learned.

Camden Clinical Commissioning Group has appointed AT Medics, a private provider of primary care services, as its extended GP access provider following a procurement process. It is a GP led provider of various primary care services in London, including core GP services and urgent care.

This was despite a receiving bid from the Haverstock Healthcare, a GP federation operating in the borough, and which currently provides the service. It covers 200,000 patients across 26 GP practices in Camden.

HSJ understands that the contract has been awarded as part of a joint procurement process for extended GP services accross five North central London CCG areas – Camden, Haringay, Islington, Barnet and Enfield – related to the national GP access fund.

In a message to local GPs, Rebecca Thornley, assistant director of primary care at Camden CCG, said: “AT Medics, who run King’s Cross Surgery, demonstrated their understanding of the local health system and the needs of Camden patients through the bidding process.

“Through providing 35 other primary care sites and GP hub and extended hour services in London, they have strong experience of working in partnership with other health and social care services to deliver similar services to similar populations.”

She said AT Medics would be working “closely” with Haverstock Healthcare “to ensure a smooth transition.”

A spokesman for Haverstock Healthcare said: “We are proud that we have delivered an extended access service that is well regarded by professionals and patients alike, demonstrated by marked improvements in both the quality of patient care and patient satisfaction rates.

“Although disappointed to not be awarded the ongoing contract, we look forward to working closely with AT Medics and Camden CCG in the coming months to ensure a smooth handover of the extended access service.”

Ms Thornley added: “Camden CCG is committed to ensuring our patients have equitable access to GP services from 8am till 8pm, seven days a week. The CCG has appointed the best possible provider for our extended GP access service, through a robust procurement process and based on the recommendation of an expert panel that included non-conflicted clinicians, a local patient and Healthwatch Camden.”