Consultant Fees

Health written question – answered on 11th December 2006.

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Photo of John Hemming John Hemming Liberal Democrat, Birmingham, Yardley 11th December 2006

To ask the Secretary of State for Health whether fees due to a consultant on a full-time contract to an NHS hospital for reports are paid to (a) the NHS and (b) the consultant.

Photo of Ivan Lewis Ivan Lewis Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health) (Care Services), Parliamentary Under-Secretary, Department of Health 11th December 2006

'Fee Paying Services' are covered by schedule 10 of the consultant contract (2003) terms and conditions of service. 'Fee Paying Services' include the provision of specialist medical reports.

Schedule 11 of the consultant contract (2003) terms and conditions of service sets out the principles governing the receipt of fees for such services. It provides that the consultant should remit any fees to his/her employer when carrying out fee-paying work for other organisations during NHS time, unless the work involves minimal disruption and the employer agrees that it may be done in NHS time without the employer collecting the fee.

For fee-paying work carried out in the consultant's own time, the consultant can retain the fee.

The 2003 consultant contract was designed to clarify the NHS commitment and private practice commitment, and to provide stronger guarantees that private practice would not disrupt provision of NHS services or detract from NHS performance. Under the new arrangements, there is much greater transparency about consultants' contractual commitments to the NHS, and clear guidelines on private work.

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