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Gaps in GP services

4th December 2007

The Healthcare Commission has warned that GPs are not diagnosing patients correctly and are also not recording important information

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The watchdog's report said GP care was more likely to be poor in deprived areas and called for the government to look into the issue.

Many GPs did not note whether their patients were smokers or not. More than 50% of the 152 health areas did not keep accurate registers of patients with chronic illnesses.

The report found that many GPs could be failing to spot the signs of serious illnesses. Figures showed that there were 140,000 fewer patients diagnosed with heart failure than expected.

Although GPs calculated the body mass index - a key tool in diagnosing obesity - of 12.5 million patients, this figure was 2 million fewer than expected..

And the report said GPs may be missing signs of serious illness as the number of patients diagnosed with heart failure was 140,000 less than expected.

Poorer areas had 18% fewer GPs per person than wealthier areas. Performance data revealed that blood pressure and cholesterol management was not as good in less wealthy communities.

Healthcare Commission chief executive Anna Walker said: "I do not know what it is that leads to GPs not doing this basic work. It is just very stark it is not happening."

However the watchdog said the NHS was making improvements to standards of care, with the decrease in waiting times especially "dramatic".




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Comments

Ullas Ran

Thursday 6th December 2007 @ 23:21

There are several shortfalls within the current GP's operating system.
The following are just a few examples:
1.How can we prevent chronic disease controls if no routine checks are done?
2.PPI is not considered during the GP's service design
3.GP's are solely interested in cost saving to maximise the profit rather than patient care
4. Health and Safety Act should directly apply to GP's to ensure reasonable measures are taken to safeguard patients health related issues
5. Regular audits not conducted by PCT to ensure full compliance to GP's contract conditions and other mandatory standards
6. Lack of out of hours openings
7. GP's are simply loging patients to gain points without any follow up care
8. GP's fundings should be based on patient satisfaction rather than GP's declaration of patient log sheets

PCT needs to be more proactive to monitor GP's performance to ensure PPI demands are delivered or privatise the service to introduce competition.

Mr. Ullas Ran - Chairman of Pharmacare UK Ltd


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