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Friday 23rd June 2017

Extended surgery hours exemptions

22nd April 2008

Under the terms of a new arrangement by the Scottish government, GP surgeries in Scotland need only offer extended opening hours for one or two days per month.


English practices must offer the extended opening times in a solid one hour and thirty minute session per week. However, in Scotland the government has decided to allow a more adaptable method due to the high number of smaller country surgeries.

Under the terms of the plan, GP surgeries with between 1,000 and 3,000 patients will need to offer patients extended opening times for "one week in two" and surgeries with fewer than 1,000 patients will need to offer the extended services once every four weeks.

GPC Scotland chairman Dr Dean Marshall said: “If you have a practice list of 1,000 you are only gong to have to do 30 minutes a week."

"The idea is that instead of doing 30 minutes a week you do an hour every fortnight and that might actually help people who do want extended hours."

He added that tiny surgeries in remote country locations might only need 15 minutes extra time per week, so in order to avoid wasting patients' and doctors' time, the surgeries would open for an additional hour once a month.

Dr Marshall clearly stated that doctors in Scotland were not in favour of the extended hours scheme.

“GPs in Scotland have the same views as GPs in the rest of the UK that this is just vote catching and if we were going to provide a good service we would not do it like this,? he said.

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