• CCG to link £2.4m of extra funding to new quality standards
  • Individual practices are unlikely to meet the standards without some form of collaboration with others
  • Borough’s LMC is broadly supportive of the project

Commissioners in Salford will invest an extra £2.4m in primary medical care next year, as they aim to get all the borough’s GPs signed up to new quality standards.

Salford Clinical Commissioning Group will launch the “Salford standard” in April, in a bid to improve care and reduce “unwarranted variation” between practices.

Individual practices are unlikely to meet the standards without some form of collaboration with others.

There are 140 standards, including: improving access; better prescribing of medicines; early detection of heart disease and risk of stroke; and increased uptake of the flu vaccination. Additional funding will be linked to meeting the standards.

Bolton and Liverpool CCGs have previously launched similar initiatives.

The borough’s local medical committee, which represents GPs, said it is broadly supportive of the project.

Anothony Hassall, the CCG’s chief accountable officer, told HSJ: “What we’ll be asking all practices to do in April is develop a plan through which they can deliver the standards.

“If practices choose not to produce a plan or if their plan isn’t to the quality we expect, then we’ll work with them to understand why and how we ensure the populations being served in the way they should be. But at this point in time I’m not foreseeing us having big issues.”

He said GPs are currently delivering services associated with a number of quality standards and indicators, at local, regional and national levels, and the new system would create a single overarching standard.

Vivienne Simenoff, chief executive of Salford and Trafford LMC, said: “We are broadly supportive of this and any practices which bring additional funding into our practices.

“We understand the benefits of practices working together and pooling management structures, and federated working is going to enable practices to more easily reach the Salford standard.”

Only half the borough’s GP surgeries are currently part of a federation, as members of Salix Health.

About £35m has been allocated to Salford for primary medical care in 2016-17 by NHS England.

This story was amended to state there are 140 new standards, rather than 34. The original information provided by the CCG was incorrect.