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Financial pressures must not reduce effectiveness of GP services, BMA warns

16 March 2010

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The leader of Scotland’s GPs has warned that the reduction in health spending will create pressure on the Scottish Government to introduce more effective general practice policies that deliver services that the public need.

Dr Dean Marshall (pictured), Chairman of the BMA’s Scottish GPs’ Committee (GPC), said such policies should be “evidence-based, value for money and most importantly improve patient outcomes.”

However, he warned: “The funding growth that has allowed the NHS to flourish in the last decade will cease. There will be increased competition across the NHS for scarce resources, and general practice must not suffer as a result.”

Dr Marshall added: “In this time of financial constraints I say to the Scottish government: we are here to help you deliver the services that the public need. We are the experts in delivering those services so listen to us – we will tell you where we can be more efficient, where we can increase productivity, where we can improve quality, but you must also listen when we tell you things that can’t be delivered, when we tell you what we shouldn’t be trying to deliver and when we tell you the costs of what you want to deliver.

“General practice is your biggest asset – value it, protect it, nurture it, look to us for the answers, not as an excuse for the problems.”

BMA Scotland