General practitioner General Practitioners Committee

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The Future of General Practice Survey - Essentials

Below are the key findings from an extraction of the survey. For more detail, and a question-by-question breakdown of responses, please download the full results of this extraction

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Essentials of general practice

When GPs are asked to rank the top 3 factors essential to general practice, the top three answers are:

Continuity of care (mentioned by 80%);
Trust and confidentiality between GP and patient (61%);
Holistic care (51%).

When asked to rank their top five factors that could help them better deliver these essentials, the top 3 most mentioned answers are:

Increased core general practice funding (76%);
Increase in the number of GPs (74%)
Longer consultation times (70%).



More than nine in ten GPs (93%) say that their heavy workload has negatively impacted on the quality of patient services.

Almost six out of ten GPs (56%) working in out of hours services feel that at times their workload is having a detrimental effect on the care they provide.


Consultation times

Many GPs do not feel they have enough time to spend with their patients and that these intense pressures are beginning to damage local services. 

BMA GPs committee chair Chaand Nagpaul

Only around one in ten GPs (8%) feel that the standard ten minute consultation is adequate.

Two thirds of GPs (67%) feel there should be longer consultations for certain groups of patients, including those with long term conditions, while one in four (25%) feel that all patients need increased time with their GP.

Two-thirds (68%) of GPs believe that it is preferable to provide longer consultations of greater quality, even if it means waiting longer to see a GP for a routine appointment.


Opening hours

A slight majority of GPs (51%) feel that practices should offer some form of extended hours to patients.

Almost all GPs (94%) do not feel practices should offer seven day opening in their own practices, while 21% of GPs believe practices should work in networks to provide seven day opening from shared sites.


Where you are

Scotland: View an infographic about the variation in responses for the essentials of general practice.

Northern Ireland: There appears to be a greater emphasis on continuity of care (83%), with lower than average emphasis on holistic care (45%).

Wales: The strongest levels of support for the current 10 minute consultation time are found in Wales (11%)

What do you think about the results in relation to where you live? Have your say.


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