Who employs your PCN staff? What’s the risk?

NHSE hosted a Twitter chat yesterday on PCN workforce – click HERE to view twitter feed. Much of the focus was around recruitment issues, but accountability for and by PCN staff is crucial.

  • Who employs PCN staff? PCNs are not legal entities. Joint employment by all the practices in a PCN can be problematic for various reasons. Other options include employment by a lead practice, a third party (such as an NHS trust or GP federation).
  • Where PCN staff are employed by one organisation but are working in and on behalf of a number of PCN practices, who is liable for the acts and omissions of those staff? And who is responsible for supervision, discipline, etc?
  • Who will be liable for employment claims if PCN staff suffer injury or are treated badly in a practice where they are working but that practice isn’t their employer?
  • How will liability for employment costs be shared? Similarly redundancy costs?

All these matters should be addressed in PCN agreements and any third party employer and in the contracts of PCN staff.

PCNs might also consider forming a limited liability company of their own to which service delivery is subcontracted and which can employ staff to limit the liability on individual practices.

If you would like to find out more about PCN structures and agreements and how we can assist generally, please contact our specialist team.

We have also developed a training programme on this, and other topical themes, which we would be happy to discuss with you. Download the training programme HERE.


Contact our GP advice line

Dial 020 7839 0278 and ask for the GP Advice Line.

Our team of experts can offer GPs and members of their teams up to ten minutes’ free preliminary advice with a solicitor.

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