01 June

The Chair of The RCGP, Dr Maureen Baker, has responded to a report on GP vacancy rates by Pulse today. The report reveals:

  • 12% of all GP posts in the UK are vacant
  • Almost half of practices have had to recruit a partner within the past 12 months, taking longer than six months on average.
  • 11.7% of posts are currently vacant, up from 9.1% last year [1]

She desires what the View suggests is the solution to put in to an active process immediately.

She said: “This survey brings home just how important it is that we do everything in our power to recruit more GPs, urgently implement schemes to retain existing ones, and make it easier for trained family doctors to return to practice in the UK following a career break or period working abroad.

’NHS England’s recent GP Forward View announcement provides a lifeline for general practice; now it is vital the proposals in the document are implemented urgently so that GPs and our teams are fully supported to provide excellent patient care now, and in the future.” [2]

This is interesting as some GPs and Primary Care leaders believe the GP Forward view does not provide enough to be a solution to the issues that Primary Care currently faces. Just two weeks ago GPs voted in the LMC conference on their willingness to take industrial action if needs be.

However the Chair Dr Baker continued to say:

‘General practice is the bedrock of the health service. We keep the NHS sustainable and our patients safe, so it’s vital that we have enough GPs and practice team members to do so for years to come.’ [ibid]

It seems that Dr Baker believes the GP Forward View will help implement solutions affectively and as quickly as they are needed. What are you views on this?

[1] Pulsetoday.co.uk. (2016). Loading…. [online] Available at: http://www.pulsetoday.co.uk/your-practice/practice-topics/employment/gp-vacancy-rates-at-highest-recorded-with-one-in-eight-positions-unfilled/20031836.article

[2] Rcgp.org.uk. (2016). RCGP response to GP vacancy figures. [online] Available at: http://www.rcgp.org.uk/news/2016/may/rcgp-response-to-gp-vacancy-figures.aspx

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