Responding to a report by National Voices about the future of primary care, Dr Kieran Sharrock, acting chair of GPC England at the BMA, said:
“Today’s report, created with input from the BMA, shows the incredible potential in general practice and what significant improvements could be made if our profession is finally given the investment it so desperately needs.
“While the Primary Care Recovery Plan has committed to improving access to GP services, this is only a first step and, as this report shows, there are many other areas in desperate need of support and investment, from standardising care pathways to speed-up diagnosis and treatment times, to tackling health inequalities.
“What’s critical to these proposals, however, is making sure there are enough staff to deliver them. According to the Health Foundation, we are currently short of the equivalent of at least 6,700 full-time qualified GPs.
“The long term workforce plan is imminent and in that plan we need to see how the Government will bolster the GP workforce, both by recruiting more staff and retaining the experienced, talented professionals already working in the NHS. Only then can we make visions like this a reality and give patients a service they deserve.”
Notes to editors
The BMA is a professional association and trade union representing and negotiating on behalf of all doctors in the UK. A leading voice advocating for outstanding health care and a healthy population. An association providing members with excellent individual services and support throughout their lives.