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GP contract revised - "expensive" numbers banned (Read 61,039 times)
Barbara
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Re: GP contract revised - "expensive" numbers bann
Reply #120 - Jul 19th, 2011 at 9:36am
 
Surely it cannot be true that the DoH is advising comparison only with BT tariffs?   Does anyone anywhere have a document proving this is not the case?   If so could they please provide it or its link urgently for the rest of us to use?   If no one has this, could someone, possibly SCV as he is so heavily involved & has such good contacts, seek absolute clarification on this?   I know the article flies in the face of last week's parliamentary question but I think we all need something quotable and authoritative.
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Dave
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Re: GP contract revised - "expensive" numbers bann
Reply #121 - Jul 19th, 2011 at 9:39am
 
Barbara wrote on Jul 19th, 2011 at 9:36am:
Surely it cannot be true that the DoH is advising comparison only with BT tariffs?   Does anyone anywhere have a document proving this is not the case?   If so could they please provide it or its link urgently for the rest of us to use?   If no one has this, could someone, possibly SCV as he is so heavily involved & has such good contacts, seek absolute clarification on this?   I know the article flies in the face of last week's parliamentary question but I think we all need something quotable and authoritative.

The statement by the Health Minister in Parliament is authoritive.
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« Last Edit: Jul 19th, 2011 at 9:56am by Dave »  
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SilentCallsVictim
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Re: GP contract revised - "expensive" numbers bann
Reply #122 - Jul 19th, 2011 at 11:11am
 
Dave wrote on Jul 19th, 2011 at 9:21am:
... Anger as surgery keeps premium rate number

Local campaigners point out that the ban applies to all modes of telecommunications, yet the PCT claims it has been told by the DH that the only comparison is the "local BT rate".

Dave wrote on Jul 19th, 2011 at 9:39am:
Barbara wrote on Jul 19th, 2011 at 9:36am:
... could someone, possibly SCV as he is so heavily involved & has such good contacts, seek absolute clarification on this?   I know the article flies in the face of last week's parliamentary question but I think we all need something quotable and authoritative.

The statement by the Health Minister in Parliament is authoritive.

Dave is correct. In effect, the PCT is alleging that the Minister misled parliament.

After contacting all parties, a campaigner has added a further comment to the Wokingham Times website. This concludes by indicating the course of action open to patients who feel that the PCT is failing in its duty.
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Re: The man behind GPs' rip-off numbers on TV toni
Reply #123 - Jul 21st, 2011 at 9:58am
 
Dave wrote on Jul 17th, 2011 at 4:48pm:
One of the main suppliers of GP phone systems with 084 numbers is Network Europe Group (NEG) with its Surgery Line system. It is now part of Daisy Group and its founder and chief executive, Matthew Riley, will be making his TV debut this evening during the final of The Apprentice which starts at 21:00 on BBC One. He is one of people Lord Sugar has called upon to grill the final four candidates.

BBC News: Nelson businessman Matthew Riley grills Apprentice finalists
Lancashire Telegraph: Nelson entrepreneur to interview Apprentice finalists tonight


A follow up to the above post.  Wink

http://davidhicksonmedia.blogspot.com/2011/07/apprentice-star-matthew-riley-aske...
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« Last Edit: Jul 21st, 2011 at 10:06am by jimjim »  
 
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speedy
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Re: GP contract revised - "expensive" numbers bann
Reply #124 - Jul 26th, 2011 at 1:03am
 
Should anything be done about Dartford East Health Centre - the one Practice that has the 0844 number is STILL updating their Web Site supposedly or is it a ploy to force Patients to use the 0844 to make an appointment - perhaps they were getting too much activity on their Web site and didnt like missing out on the dosh !!!   Or perhaps they didnt like the complaints and reviews they were getting on it - Clever eh !!!

Anyone any idea how long it has been like this ?
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Re: GP contract revised - "expensive" numbers bann
Reply #125 - Jul 26th, 2011 at 10:54am
 
speedy wrote on Jul 26th, 2011 at 1:03am:
 ... perhaps they were getting too much activity on their Web site and didnt like missing out on the dosh !!!   Or perhaps they didnt like the complaints and reviews they were getting on it - Clever eh !!!

"speedy", this is interesting.   Could you give us more information on what was on their website?   It sounds as though on-line appointment booking and other facilities were available, or are you referring to something else?   Also, you refer to complaints and reviews -- were patients able to put their complaints and reviews on the website?    Is there a "cached" copy of the site that we can look at?

When did they get their 0844?

I notice that they have a geo number for their Fax, could this help you discover the geo number behind the 0844?
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« Last Edit: Jul 26th, 2011 at 10:54am by loddon »  
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BMA continues to denie the extent of the ban
Reply #126 - Jul 27th, 2011 at 8:10pm
 
The BMA has put out some more propaganda on the ban on expensive telephone numbers, dated July 2011:

GPC GUIDANCE: USE OF 084 NUMBERS BY GP PRACTICES

It contains this blatant falsity:

Quote:
What do the regulations say about calls from mobile phones?

The regulations do not include any specific requirement for practices to consider the cost of calls from mobile phones. In terms of call tariffs, the call rates which patients are charged depend on their mobile phone service provider. It is a matter for individual members of the public to ensure that they are happy with the terms and conditions of the mobile phone arrangements that they enter into with their mobile phone provider.


A Health Minister recently said in Parliament of the GP number ban:

…It is absolutely clear that there is no distinction between landlines, mobiles or payphones. The directions are very clear that patients should not expect to be charged any more.
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Barbara
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Re: GP contract revised - "expensive" numbers bann
Reply #127 - Jul 28th, 2011 at 9:22am
 
Has this been brought yet again to the attention of those responsible at the BMA?
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SilentCallsVictim
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Re: GP contract revised - "expensive" numbers bann
Reply #128 - Jul 28th, 2011 at 11:03am
 
Barbara wrote on Jul 28th, 2011 at 9:22am:
Has this been brought yet again to the attention of those responsible at the BMA?

See The BMA advises its members to continue the 084 telephone number scam


The issue of a practice abandoning a 0844 number has brought to light a failure by Bedfordshire PCT to perform its duties - see Example of how PCTs are failing

I understand that BBC 3 Counties Radio will be doing a piece on this at 2.30 this afternoon.
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CJT-80
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Re: GP contract revised - "expensive" numbers bann
Reply #129 - Jul 28th, 2011 at 1:16pm
 
Dave/SCV

I am now really confused. I was told by my Local PCT and Dr's Sugery that they are "Unable" to get out of their contact untill it is next up for re-tendering and that is why they are unable to change their number from 0844.

So what IS the situation? How can I clearly inform both the PCT and Surgery that they are able to modify the number to an 01/02/03 number?

It seems that the situation as it stands is far from clear, as the Health Minister in SCV's link appears to be confused herself.

As far as I can see only 01/02/03 numbers are inclusive, and therefore in MY case I will ALWAY'S pay more then the cost of a "geographic" call if I call the 0844 number.

Any advice is welcome.
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CJT-80

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SilentCallsVictim
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Re: GP contract revised - "expensive" numbers bann
Reply #130 - Jul 28th, 2011 at 2:07pm
 
CJT-80 wrote on Jul 28th, 2011 at 1:16pm:
I was told by my Local PCT and Dr's Sugery that they are "Unable" to get out of their contact untill it is next up for re-tendering and that is why they are unable to change their number from 0844.

If the surgery were to approach the telephone service provider and say that they needed to transfer to a 01/02 or 03 number in order to stop patients incurring additional costs, it would be told what options are available.

At the very least, they will be able to migrate to a 03 number. This is a standard option offered by Talk Talk to all of its customers at any time during the term of their arrangement, WITHOUT PENALTY. I have not heard of any case where such a request was refused.


On transferring to 03 (or 01/02) the surgery will, of course, suffer the loss of the illegal subsidy at the expense of patients, placing it in the same position as all other NHS GPs who meet the costs incurred in providing NHS services out of the funding provided for the purpose.

I would fully support any practice that wished to plead for assistance from those who had led it to believe that its telephone system was not as expensive as it is seen to be when migration to a 03 number fully exposes the costs, with the subsidy from patients removed. If such requests for assistance are not answered, it must honour the commitments it made when choosing its system - IT CANNOT CONTINUE TO USE NHS PATIENTS AS A SOURCE OF SUBSIDY.


I do not believe that the Health Minister was actually confused. I suspect that she is unaware of the ease with which practices can migrate to 03 numbers, because there is no strong base of evidence for this. Practices are being discouraged from taking this option, because once it is seen to work then the true cost of these systems (and thereby the scale of the subsidy from which they have been benefiting) will be exposed to view.
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CJT-80
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Re: GP contract revised - "expensive" numbers bann
Reply #131 - Jul 28th, 2011 at 3:28pm
 
Excuse my slight ignorence,

The practice "moves" it's number to an 03 number. They then pay part of the cost of the incomming call per minute or does SurgeryLines supplier (NEG/Daisy Group) pick up the cost and therefore expect the Sugery to pay them back?

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CJT-80

Any comments made are my own and are not those of SayNoTo0870.com
 
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SilentCallsVictim
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Re: GP contract revised - "expensive" numbers bann
Reply #132 - Jul 29th, 2011 at 4:49am
 
CJT-80 wrote on Jul 28th, 2011 at 3:28pm:
Excuse my slight ignorence,

The practice "moves" it's number to an 03 number. They then pay part of the cost of the incomming call per minute or does SurgeryLines supplier (NEG/Daisy Group) pick up the cost and therefore expect the Sugery to pay them back?


I understand that NEG/Daisy acts as an agent for Talk Talk in providing the telephone service to the practice and as the agent of a leasing company funding the switchboard and other equipment installed at the surgery.

I understand that the periodic (monthly/quarterly) charge/credit to the practice from NEG/Daisy consolidates charges/credits from Talk Talk, service charges from NEG/Daisy and lease payments.

When using a 0844 number the Talk Talk element will be a sizeable credit. The "Surgery Line" proposal is that this will more than offset the other two elements. In reality, it is commonly found that it fails to do so.

Without the benefit of revenue share the cost of the telephone line (and associated features) will be charged in full by Talk Talk. This means that the overall cost to the practice will be the full cost of the system which they selected. This is fair, because all other NHS GPs have to meet the costs incurred in providing NHS services from the funding provided for the purpose.

The simple regulations intended to restore this proper state of affairs are being resisted for two reasons. The BMA obviously wishes for its GP members to benefit from reduced costs wherever it can. NEG/Daisy is apparently concerned that if the true full cost of its system were exposed, then it would be seen to be unaffordable by GPs. Both have argued that it is right for NHS patients to pay to subsidise the cost of GP telephone systems as they access NHS services. After this argument was rejected, they have been reduced to misrepresenting the terms of the regulations and seeking to disguise the possibility of changing to a 03 (or perhaps 01/02) number, whilst retaining the "Surgery Line" system for the remainder of the term of lease.

Given that both have clearly declared their opposition to the principle of "free at the point of need", one has to see these tricks as being ways of achieving their declared objective by stealth.

The fact that the charges for using the features of a non-geographic number are typically based on call volumes (as a pence per minute rate applied to incoming calls), rather than as a monthly rental, is immaterial. 080, 03 and 0870 numbers work this way because most non-geographic numbers are revenue sharing (including PRS numbers) and so it is convenient to apply a call volume based approach in all cases.

(I am not sure how what we know as "non-geographic number features" are charged for when they are deployed on geographic numbers. Perhaps someone who knows more about this could help!)
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SilentCallsVictim
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Re: GP contract revised - "expensive" numbers bann
Reply #133 - Jul 29th, 2011 at 10:12am
 
SilentCallsVictim wrote on Jul 28th, 2011 at 11:03am:
The issue of a practice abandoning a 0844 number has brought to light a failure by Bedfordshire PCT to perform its duties - see Example of how PCTs are failing

I understand that BBC 3 Counties Radio will be doing a piece on this at 2.30 this afternoon.

... They did
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Re: GP contract revised - "expensive" numbers bann
Reply #134 - Jul 29th, 2011 at 10:41am
 
SilentCallsVictim wrote on Jul 29th, 2011 at 10:12am:
SilentCallsVictim wrote on Jul 28th, 2011 at 11:03am:
The issue of a practice abandoning a 0844 number has brought to light a failure by Bedfordshire PCT to perform its duties - see Example of how PCTs are failing

I understand that BBC 3 Counties Radio will be doing a piece on this at 2.30 this afternoon.

... They did
Well done David, could not be any clearer, we await the response ...
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