Doctors and other health professionals who became partners in GP practices after 1 April 2020 may be eligible to receive a £20,000 “golden hello” as part of a new deal for general practice.
The delayed ‘new to partnership payment’, which had been due to come in from April, but was delayed due to the Covid-19 pandemic, gives eligible participants the following:
- A sum of up to £20,000
- A contribution towards on-costs of up to £4,000 (for a full time participant) available to support establishment as a partner
- Up to £3,000 in a training fund to develop non-clinical partnership skills
To be eligible for the payment the new partner also has to:
- Never have held a GP partnership before
- Hold a profit share in a legal partnership
- Commit to remaining a partner in a GP practice for five years (or pay back some of the money)
- Deliver a minimum of two clinical sessions per week in their partnership practice
- Have signed a partnership agreement on or after 1 April 2020 and before the end of the scheme
- Have a minimum of two years remaining in their contract
Practices may need to redraft their partnership agreement, which must be in place for the golden hello to be claimed. The golden hello payment will be paid to the practice as a lump sum and must be passed on to the individual new partner. However, if the new partner leaves the role after less than five years, 20% will have to be repaid for each incomplete year up to the five-year term. A claw back will also occur if the partner reduces their hours during this period. Practices could face significant financial risk from a claw back so it will be important that protections for the existing partners are built into the partnership agreement, to make it easier to recover monies from the new partner after they leave.