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Monday 21st May 2018

GPs to become one-stop shops

6th February 2007

10042006_physicalexam1.jpgGPs look set to take more and more services away from hospitals under new plans announced by the government.

The government’s GP czar Dr David Colin-Thome wants to see GPs set up one-stop shops, carry out minor operations, take on diagnostic work, host outpatient clinics and carry out the thousands of routine post-operative follow-up appointments carried out on surgical patients six weeks after their operations.

Operations on offer at your local surgery would include cataract and hernia repairs.

The move was announced by health secretary Patricia Hewitt as she launched Dr Colin-Thome’s new report which followed a White Paper last year.

She said there would be no pay increase for GPs to go with the added workload, but the new services would be funded from budget cuts in the acute sector where the work would come from.

She predicted that GP services would be ‘unrecognisable’ within a decade, and that the changes would provide more convenient and faster treatment for patients.

GPs have faced criticism over the hike in their salaries following the new GP contracts, which has seen average pay jump to almost £120,000 – a 63% rise in three years.

Although there are no plans for GPs to go back to providing out-of-hours services, patient pressure would improve access, said Ms Hewitt. GPs stand to lose up to £8,000 if they are rated badly by their patients.

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