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Heading into the summer, and with another successful ARM in Belfast now behind us, this seems a good time to update you on the work SGPC has ongoing.
To start with, I have promised to keep you up to date on the BMA’s call for a solution to problems caused by punitive and unexpected pension tax bills that I know are causing many members serious concerns.
The last time I blogged was to urge you to fill out the BMA survey on the issue. It is no surprise to me that many of you did exactly that – reflecting the scale and impact of this whole issue.
We published some of the headline, interim results – which hopefully you may have seen in the media.
In all, nearly two thirds (63%) of those who responded have either received a large pension tax bill or are actively expecting one. A further 21% are worried they may be due to receive a bill.
Many GPs responded to say that they were no longer taking on out of hours shifts, something we know is a huge issue for these already fragile services.
The survey is still open – and you can access it at the following link. Equally we are doing all we can to keep this issue very much on the minds of politicians. One way you can get involved and help is to write to your local MP, or indeed MSP. I know some of you will have done this already, but we have worked up a fresh template letter which reflects the survey results and implications for GPs in particular. To get a copy of the template, email: [email protected] – making clear it is the GP version you require - and we can then send you a word document to be edited directly.
Please, if you can, spend even five minutes of your time on this – needless to say the more letters, the better.
In other news, we are continuing to work hard on implementation of the new contract across the whole of Scotland.
As part of this, the deadline for applications for the minimum earnings expectation for partners is 31 July. As a reminder, this measure will mean is that no whole-time equivalent GP partner in a practice will earn less than the minimum earnings expectation of £70,000 per annum plus employer’s superannuation. This equates to £84,630 per annum per WTE GP partner in the practice.
If you want more guidance on this, and how to apply – have a look at the following link.
So those are just two of the key issues we are pursuing at the moment – but they reflect just the tip of the iceberg in terms of the work underway.
For a more general BMA perspective, Scottish Chair Lewis Morrison used his speech at the ARM to call for bullying in Scotland’s NHS to be tackled head on. If you want to read the full speech – you can find it here. Indeed you’ll find all of the BMA Scotland blogs at this link – including mine – so it’s a good place to keep up with news not just from SGPC, but the BMA as a whole.
Keep checking back – and no doubt there will be more GP related content posted soon.
The pensions crisis needs to be resolved asap. This is the biggest issue affecting GP recruitment and retension - if not fixed within next few months, it will cause the collapse of GP OOH services and GP practices in Scotland. No going back!
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very nice information you share with us. thanks for this.