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GP workforce has reached “crisis point”

24 July 2014

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GP Taskforce has released a government-commissioned report revealing that the GP workforce is under serious threat.

The findings discovered that the GP workforce is actually shrinking rather than growing, whilst an uneven distribution of GPs was reported throughout the country.

Highly deprived areas have fewer GPs per head when compared with the UK average.

Deputy Chair of the BMA’s GP committee, Dr Richard Vautrey believes that it has reached a “serious crisis point” and that Ministers must act fast to address the problem.

The study also showed that a large number of GPs are planning retirement in the next five years.

The lessening workforce is coinciding with patients facing problems with accessing GP services.

Richard Vautrey said: “We have reached a serious crisis point where not enough GPs are being recruited and too many are retiring early. Recent GP trainee recruitment figures showed hundreds of vacancies across the UK2. A BMA survey in March suggested that six out of ten GP were considering early retirement, with a third actively planning for this decision.

“There is no longer any time to waste and the government needs to implement the findings of this report in full and begin a programme of sustained, long term investment in the GP workforce as the BMA has called for in the Your GP Cares campaign.”