GP and BMA education, training and workforce committee chair, Dr Krishna Kasaraneni, has responded to a recent BBC survey on GPs.
The survey found that more than half of GPs expect to leave the profession early. Kasaraneni said: “The BMA has been warning for some time that there is a real and serious GP workforce crisis emerging across the country. GP services are under unprecedented workload pressure, with practices seeing record numbers of patients – 40 million more annually than in 2008 – against a background of mounting bureaucracy and falling resources.
“This has led to a significant drop in GP morale, and, as the BBC’s survey shows, has led to a worrying number of senior GPs choosing to retire early or work abroad, at the same time that general practice faces a serious shortfall in the number of doctors choosing to train as GPs.
“In my own practice, two established GPs and one newly qualified GP have moved to Canada and Australia since last summer due to the unsustainable daily pressure facing GPs.
“If this situation becomes normality it will result in an accelerating decline in the overall number of GPs, and will present a threat to patient care as there will be too few GPs for the number of patients walking through the surgery doors.”