§ Mrs. Beckett
To ask the Secretary of State for Health what evidence she has on the levels of support for fundholding among general practitioners; and what conclusions she draws from that evidence.
§ Mr. Malone
Over 35 per cent. of the population is now registered with a fundholding general practitioner. More general practitioners are preparing to join the scheme from next April and regional health authorities report considerable interest in the extended options for fundholding announced in October.
From this, and the benefits for patients fundholding is delivering, I conclude that we were right to enable general practitioners to purchase care and improve services for patients in this way and to extend the options to enable them to do so.