Irish Medical Organisation signs breakthrough Framework Agreement with Minister for Health
New Agreement sets out an agreed process for engagement by the IMO on GMS/GP Contract and other “publicly funded contracts involving GPs”
Wednesday 4th June 2014. The Irish Medical Organisation has today signed a Framework Agreement with the Minister for Health which sets out for the first time an agreement on how the IMO can fully represent its GP members in respect of discussions around all aspects including resources and fees for publicly funded contracts including the GMS Contract. The new agreement will enable the IMO to fully consult with its GP membership and represent their views in discussions with the Government on the GMS Contract and any new GP Contract.
Dr. Ray Walley, Chairman of the GP Committee of the IMO said that the Framework Agreement recognised the IMO’s role as the representative body for GPs and would ensure that the voice and the opinions of GPs was heard loud and clear when reforms and resources for publicly funded contracts for GPs were being discussed.
Dr. Walley said that the Framework Agreement – together with the terms of the Settlement Agreement between the Competition Authority and the IMO – would remove “massive obstacles” to engagement between the IMO and the Department of Health/HSE.
Dr. Walley said; “today’s agreement confirms that in terms of representing our members the IMO is entitled to:
• Communicate with its members and to have discussions with its members and to express its opinions to its members at every stage of the process including the outcome of any engagement
• Hold consultative ballots of members to ascertain their views of the contract (but as always it will remain a matter for each GP to individually decide whether or not to accept the terms being offered)
• Advise members as to what work is covered and what work has not been negotiated and for which no fee is payable
Dr. Walley said that the Agreement would open the way to constructive engagement about the future of GP services and the pressing need for proper resourcing of this critical part of the health services. Dr Walley said “a properly resourced GP service has the potential to deliver high quality services to patients in Ireland “.