DH seeks view on NHS pricing system

From April 2014 sector regulator Monitor and the NHS CB will take over responsibility for pricing NHS services from the DH through the national tariff. Monitor has launched a consultation examining circumstances in which objections to pricing proposals could merit reconsideration and also the threshold at which the healthcare regulator will then be required to act.

The consultation document asks questions about which providers can formally object to the pricing system Monitor uses.  The document also asks what objection 'threshold' is required before Monitor rethinks a proposal. The document proposes a 51% objection rate from commissioners and providers on pricing proposals before the regulator will rethink prices or refer the proposed methodology to the Competition Commission for a decision.

Once Monitor publishes the final draft of the national tariff it has to allow providers and commissioners 28 days to raise any concerns and objections.

According to the government an effective pricing system is critical to achieving value for money and the national tariff will include prices for specified services or bundles of services delivered to prescribed standards.

The closing date for the consultation is 21 December 2012. You can respond to the consultation online.

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