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Friday 28th October 2016

GPs do not want to work longer for free

4th July 2012

Doctors’ leaders say plans to extend surgery opening hours could affect GP recruitment.


And they have warned that family doctors in Wales do not want to work longer for free with Saturday morning sessions.

The Welsh Government says that its plans to make it easier to see a doctor will not cost any more, or see GPs work longer, though this claim was rejected by the Liberal Democrats.

They sent questionnaires to about 690 practices and all but three of the 130 responses said they did not think the plan would work without extra money.

A total of 113 disagreed with the policy and 127 said they did not think it could be implemented without more funding.

In addition, some GPs said they had already asked their patients about extended opening times and found little demand for evening or weekend appointments.

First Minister Carwyn Jones has said more convenient appointments could be available for working people if GPs rejigged their hours and comes as health boards have already begun the process.

The British Medical Association has warned the Welsh government that its members do not want to work longer hours for free, although it is supportive of there being late, bookable appointments to ensure patients receive the “optimum quality care.”

Dr David Bailey, chair of the Welsh GP committee, said: “But longer access must be negotiated and funded via a direct enhanced service - something which every health board in Wales is able to offer now, or contracting with out-of-hours organisations.”


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