Devon Primary Care Trust judgement in High Court
DevonPCT judgement
An account of the suspension, contingent removal and termination of Devon GP Dr Roger Stephenson's contract, the subsequent High Court judgement against Devon Primary Care Trust and ongoing developments in this case.
Freedom of Information news.

A recently publicised (August 2009) response to a FOI request shows that Devon PCT pays some practices twice as much as others for patient care.

The annual amounts below (with one exception) are exclusive of QOF (Quality and Outcome Framework), Enhanced Services, Premises, Prescribing, Dispensing, Rates/Waste and Seniority, and the per patient figure is based on weighted list size. [pwp = Per Weighted Patient]

GMS practices (32): Range £60.01 to £75.82 pwp

PMS practices (72): Range £63.27 to £112.83 pwp

APMS practices (2): Range £120.00 to £138.13* pwp

*includes enhanced services and QOF
(To see the full FOI response please click here (.pdf)).

In another FOI response the two APMS practices are identified as Okement Primary Care Centre, Okehampton, and Bow Medical Practice.
Here is an example (.doc) of one of the legal invoices released under the Freedom of Information Act in response to an enquiry about the legal costs incurred by the PCT.

Lack of training for PCT's Investigating Officers: A FOI request is trying to find out Devon PCT’s policy on appropriate training for their investigators who conduct Performance Enquiries.

Update: 25 May 2010 A FOI internal review (.pdf) into an earlier response that did not answer the questions has revealed that NHS Devon/Devon PCT

  • has no policy as regards training of Investigating Officers

  • recognises that training of their Investigating Officers could be improved

  • seems unaware of available Investigating Officer training, including that provided by NCAS
NCAS policy is that Investigating Officers “should be appropriately trained”.  The response to the FOI request confirms that the Investigating Officers in Dr Stephenson’s case had not received specific training for this role.

The legal framework set out in the 2004 regulations means that a PCT panel chairman can prevent cross examination of an Investigating Officer’s findings (though national guidelines dictate otherwise – see “Devon PCT’s quasi-judicial process” on Devon PCT page of this website).  Dr Stephenson’s first opportunity properly to challenge the investigations into his practice would have been his appeal to the FHSAA. Devon PCT withdrew their reply to this appeal, and it was cancelled as a result.

The reports of the Investigating Officers, who were untrained for their role, have never been fairly challenged.

up arrow
Top of Page
Devon Primary Trust judgement    Last Updated January 2015    Web Page by IT Solutions    URL: