The new general medical services (GMS) contract in April 2004 introduced a completely new system for funding GP practices and GPs. Funding is now primarily practice-based and is based on weighted patient populations rather than numbers of GPs.

General medical services (GMS) contract

The new remuneration system gives GP practices much more flexibility in how they deliver services, allowing them choices as to how they organise patient care whilst rewarding them for the quality of this care. An annual enquiry provides a very detailed study of GP earnings & expenses. Introduction of the new GMS contract also allowed GPs to opt-out of providing out-of-hours services.

Information and analysis directorate (IAD) develops funding formulae and carries out modelling of investment strategies to support the department of health (DoH) in contract negotiations.

GMS formula 

Funding for GP services follows the patient, not the GP. Funding is based on relative workload associated with each patient.

Investment in general practice

This publication details investment in general practice and the reimbursement of drugs dispensed in general practice in Northern Ireland.

A UK-wide report on investment in general practice produced by NHS Digital has been discontinued.  Previous reports can be accessed here

Statistical overview of general practice in NI

GP earnings and expenses 

NHS Digital produces annual estimates of GP Earnings and Expenses

GP out-of-hours services 

The GP out-of-hours (OoH) service provides care for people when their normal GP surgery is closed. GP OoH is the responsibility of the health and social care board (HSCB).

For more information visit the HSCB GP out-of-hours website.

Registered patients, GP Workforce and GP surgeries

The Business Services Organisation (BSO) Information Unit produce a range of statistics for each of the Family Practitioner Services

The BSO Information Unit presents information on patients, General Practitioners and GP surgeries in Northern Ireland.

For further information contact us

Back to top