General practitioner England

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GP trainee performers list omission 'unacceptable'

A clerical error that led to dozens of trainee doctors being unable to work has been described as ‘unacceptable’ by the BMA.

More than 40 GP trainees in Oxfordshire and the West Midlands were left unable to train or treat patients after NHS England failed to include their names on the MPL (medical performers list).

BMA GPs committee deputy chair Richard Vautrey said the error had left doctors in limbo, adding that the BMA would formally raise the matter with NHS England.

He said: ‘At a time when general practice is buckling under pressure from rising patient demand, falling resources and staff shortages, we need to ensure every potential new GP is given the best training opportunities possible so they can deliver first-rate care to patients in the future.

‘It is unacceptable that failures in routine processes are stopping doctors from being available to engage in training and treat patients.

‘On a personal level, these doctors are being left in limbo by delays to their registration.

‘This will mean their training could be extended and a potential delay in their qualification date, which only compounds the GP workforce crisis.’

The MPL, managed by NHS England, gives doctors the right to practise in primary care.

An NHS England spokesperson said that a number of doctors were temporarily unable to see patients owing to not being added to the list in time, but stressed that steps had been taken to prevent similar oversights in the future.

The spokesperson added: ‘NHS England recognises the disruption caused and worked with partners to rectify the situation quickly.

‘In many cases, these young doctors were included on the MPL within a week.

‘This incident is being treated by NHS England as a significant event.’