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BMA: How to address practices’ inappropriate workload

25 September 2015

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The British Medical Association (BMA) has issued guidelines to assist over-stretched GPs in workload management, including chapters on patient self-care, reducing bureaucracy and working with other practices.

The guidance, Quality First: Managing Workload to Deliver Safe Patient Care, aims to provide practical for GPs.

When tasks are inappropriately referred, contact the referral source using a template letter included in the guidance and inform them of this, requiring the CCG/local area team to address this if necessary, the BMA advises.

It also suggests methods to assess starting or ending an enhanced service, recommending that questions are asked such as: What is the bidding or application process – some can be bureaucratic, time consuming and complex and detract from core duties? Will taking on the enhanced service detract from or undermine the practice’s provision of core GP services?

The new guidelines are predominately being aimed at GPs in England, Wales and Northern Ireland, although planning for similar guidance for Scotland is under way.

Last year, a survey by the BMA revealed that 74% of GPs described their workload as “unmanageable” or “unsustainable”.

The full guidance is available here.