Contractual Advice

General Medical Services (GMS) Contracts

SGPC produces guidance documents to help GPs, Practice Managers and LMC staff to understand how individual practices receive funding under the General Medical Services (GMS) contract, which can be found in their entirety on the BMA website. We would advise all GPs to read the contract document and supporting documentation.

2014/17 GMS Stability Contract

The BMA’s Scottish GP Committee has agreed changes to the GMS (GP) contract for 2014-2015 with the Scottish Government. The BMA believe that these agreements will achieve the following:

  • Reduce unnecessary targets and bureaucracy, reducing interference in consultations and allowing focus on the needs of the patient
  • Focus primary care resources on the most vulnerable patients in the community
  • Provide greater stability of funding for GP practices
  • Address some GP practice workload concerns
  • Continue to promote a return to the concept of GP professionalism and leadership

The Scottish Government intends to apply uplift to the value of the contract reflecting an element for expenses and a pay uplift but this will also take account of the Scottish Government’s public pay policy. The Scottish Government remains committed to the Doctors’ and Dentists’ Review Body (DDRB) process and will await the DDRB’s recommendation before deciding on the level of the uplift. In addition, SGPC and the Scottish Government have stated that they will explore the development of a Scottish Contract as part of a longer term agreement (for three years) to create a stable funding environment for general practice. This will include discussions on how a GP contract in Scotland can be structured, taking account of:

  • Moving toward the 2020 vision for health and social care
  • Strengthening primary health care teams in and around GP practices
  • Addressing issues relating to caring for the elderly population and those within deprived and rural areas
  • Scottish Government proposals around seniority and recruitment and retention incentives

Section 17C Contracts

A 17C contract is a locally-agreed alternative to the nationally agreed General Medical Services (also known as 17J) Contract for providers of General Practice. Legislation has allowed for Section 17C contracts since 2004. Unlike GMS contracts, they are negotiated between the Board and the practice, and are not subject to national negotiations between the Scottish Government and the Scottish General Practitioners Committee. In 2013/14 NHSGGC have engaged with GP practices on the offer of Section 17C contracts. The Glasgow LMC committee are not supportive of this locally negotiated contract but have contributed to discussions with the Board. Any practice thinking of moving to 17C or signing a 17C contact would need to get these contracts checked legally and financially and seek changes if needed. The LMC are not able to offer legal advice.

Contract and Contractual guidance library