GP surgeries on Sundays?13th April 2010
PulseToday editor Steve Nowottny discusses the Conservatives' pledge to extend patients' access to GPs.
The entry of GP issues into the election fray has a familiar ring to it.
In May 2007 Gordon Brown, as part of his leadership bid, set out a key plank as extended hours access to GPs.
At the time, Pulse reported how Mr Brown had put GPs in the firing line over access out of core hours while saying privately that he did not want to redraft the GP contract.
Evening and weekend surgeries are now a reality but the Tories are pledging to further improve extended hours access - and renegotiate the GP contract.
Patients are to be guaranteed access to a local GP – though not necessarily their local GP - for routine appointments between 8am and 8pm seven days a week, though this does already happen through a GP-led health centre.
While every practice will not have to open, they will have to commission cover.
GPs may wonder how a pledge to provide seven-days-a-week access to GPs squares with shadow health secretary Andrew Lansley’s claim that ‘senior professionals providing a service who are accountable to patients should not have their hours controlled by Government’.
The ‘elephant in the room’ for Tory plans to renegotiate the GP contract is whether the additional work will attract new money, and how much GPs will be given to spend.
That remains unknown but it will inevitably cost millions.
In bettering Labour’s pledge to improve GP access with ‘Sunday surgeries’, the Conservatives have effectively negated charges that their extended hours policy favoured doctors rather than patients.
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Wednesday 14th April 2010 @ 23:26
Doctors' whole position should be re negotiated. Their admin work should be delegated, they should not be paid to run business and be government clerks.
They should be spending their time looking after the sick.
The rule should be that you have your own doctor who will be the normal person you see. If you come out in spots and want an opinion certainly any Doctor will do.
Surgeries should go and reappear in all work places schools and universities and shops not dedicated to that population but available there.
Knowledge of and concern for families should be an essential part of patient care. Many horrendous social problems could be avoided or at least picked up early.
Hospitals should do all but the most basic tests.
Night care should be in the hands of your own practice or everyone should be issued with a meaningful hard disc for an unfamiliar doctor to use.
All interviews for doctors to work in uk must be conducted in english and a medical scenario worked through to test Medical/English. Anything less is crazy.
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Title: GP surgeries on Sundays?
Author: Mark Nicholls
Article Id: 14613
Date Added: 13th Apr 2010