03 December

In the past five years, there have been over five hundred GP closures. However, patient need has also double in the same time.

Official statistics has recorded that 518 surgeries have closed in total. Although some surgeries have merged together and partnered up in this time, the closures can still not compensate for the mass amount of patients who will suffer as a result.

Certain areas of the country will have to travel to receive medical attention, rural areas especially will miss out on close medical help. Essentially, there are more patients in need, than can be supplied for.
‘So far this year 78 local clinics have closed but only nine have opened’ [1]. This is conclusive that patients are losing more than they gain.

Primary Care Professionals realize the importance of primary care in the healthcare industry. Therefore, what worries us most about these staggering statistics is; as the NHS continues to struggle with cuts, and emergency rooms are over-filled with patients who have no where to go, closing GP surgeries will not help patients divert from the over-crowded A and E departments.

Although most surgeries are merging together, more practices need to continue to open. We realize, as a medical recruitment team for GP’s and Nurses, surgeries and care centre’s are the future. This is why we dedicate our time to supplying Nurses and GP’s to surgeries and practices that are truly in need.

But does this help our situation now? How are we as a country meant to reach a level of understanding when surgeries are being closed down.

‘About 100 surgeries could be forced to close because of changes to the way the Government allocates money, leaving patients in some rural areas without a doctor, the British Medical Association has warned.’ [2]

Whilst some blame the government, others worry about not being able to see their own family doctor, and will now have to travel further to a new ‘super-surgery’. This is a valid argument to discuss. Dealing with our health is the most important thing in our lives. To rely on a family doctor, is due to the trust patients have developed in their GP’s over the years.

Due to the necessary movement of GP surgeries expanding, this may no longer be possible for some patients.

However, this could also mean that perhaps in the future local GP’s will become more available due to their high demand.

Please let us know your thoughts on the healthcare system. Who do you think is to blame? And, how can it be made better?

[1] Mail Online, (2014). 500 GP surgeries have closed in just five years. Available at: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2754036/Five-HUNDRED-GP-surgeries-closed-just-five-years-number-patients-needing-services-increased.html [Accessed 3 Dec. 2014].

[2] Ibid

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