Thursday, 4 February 2016

The Magic GP tree

General Practice is in crisis, and I see this in contacts I have with all my ex-colleagues. The last time we approached a problem of this magnitude was around the time of the 2003 GP contract. That was the time when the then Government were keen to start privatising aspects of the NHS, and out-of-hours services were seen as an obvious choice. So GPs were bribed to stop out-of-hours, and NHS Direct, commercial GP out-of-hours services and NHS 111 were all introduced.

And we all know how successful that has been!

Last year the Prime Minister promised an extra 5000 GPs by 2020. I really don't know how the Government will achieve this, when there are record numbers of GPs retiring, emigrating or leaving medicine, and applications for training are down by 5% this year alone.

Where are they going to come from?

The magic GP tree at the bottom of the garden?