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by Stuart Gidden
16 September 2007

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The Editor’s weekly letter


Once again GPs are coming under increasing pressure over extended hours. On Tuesday, Health Secretary Alan Johnson said he thinks GPs should be able to operate out of sports halls and pharmacies to make health services more accessible for working people. Do you fancy working in the local gym? Let us know what you think.

The Confederation of British Industry (CBI) have also waded into the debate, calling for a “thorough overhaul of the GP system“. They claim the limited number of services on offer cost the country more than £1 bn. Are surgeries and their staff facing intolerable pressure to change the way they operate? Let us know what you think by leaving your feedback at the end of each article.

I’d like to remind you that the latest issue of Management In Practice is online now. You will find all the articles from MIP 9 (as well as the previous eight issues), including Ailsa Colqhoun on the role of the pharmacist independent prescriber; employment lawyer Prisca Bradley explains the impact of the 2006 Work and Families Act on your practice; GP Judith Harvey looks at the benefits of sending appointment reminders by text message; and if you have ever been to a meeting and can’t remember what conclusions were reached because it ran for so long, then check out Wendy Garcarz’s guide to chairing a successful meeting.

And if you haven’t already done so, why not take time out to check out some the most popular stories and video of the week:
Live in London
Weekend work puts the boot in
Call for charges as 13 million GP appointments missed
Patients should contribute to surgery decisions

Next week we’ll have movies and slide presentations from the recent Management In Practice London Event available for you to view online, but if you can’t wait that long, then just click here to watch webcasts from previous Events, including the first part of Allan Hildon’s talk on the evolving role of the practice manager. You’ll be able to catch up with part two next week.

Finally, many thanks to the hundreds of you who have completed our online survey. However, we are still looking for more responses as we strive to make the site better. It takes around three minutes to complete and every completed survey is entered into a prize draw for the chance to win one of four £25 M&S gift vouchers.

Have a good week,

Stuart Gidden,
Supervising Editor

PS. The Birmingham National Exhibition Centre is the venue for the final Management In Practice Event of the year. AMSPAR president Elaine Guy will be one of the many speakers in a packed programme, as will be Patricia Gray who will be giving a masterclass on partnership issues. Recognised by the Institute of Healthcare Management (IHM) and supported by the RCGP and AMSPAR, the Event is a fantastic opportunity for you to meet your fellow professionals, exchange ideas and experiences and enjoy a free lunch. AMSPAR will also be holding their AGM to which all members are invited to attend. Just click here to register for free.