Scotland General practitioner

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GPs to have their say on the future of general practice

A poll opens today [Thursday 7 December] for GPs and GP trainees across Scotland to have their say on the proposed new GP contract.  

The contract, which was negotiated between the BMA and the Scottish government, aims to reduce workload pressures and re-establish general practice as an attractive career choice. It provides for an expanded multi-disciplinary team to work with GP practices to provide direct access to services for patients, allowing GPs to concentrate on being expert medical generalists. 

Dr Alan McDevitt, Chair of the BMA’s Scottish GP committee, said: “I would urge GPs to accept the new contract offer.  GPs across Scotland have been telling us of the pressures that they are facing.  Over a quarter of practices have at least one GP vacancy, and we are increasingly hearing of practices having to hand back responsibility to the health board.  We must adopt new ways of working if we are to reverse these trends.  I believe that this contract sets us in a new direction, whilst retaining the key characteristics that we value, such as the independent contractor status and autonomy to deliver services which are appropriate for our communities.

“The Scottish government has pledged a significant amount of funding in direct support of general practice through this contract proposal.  No practice will see a reduction in income under the new contract, and many practices will see an increase in income.  The proposed contract will also expand golden hellos in rural areas and provides financial assistance for relocation costs, which will help rural GP recruitment.
“I truly believe that the contract we have negotiated will, if implemented, bring significant benefits to general practice across the country and help to attract more young doctors into careers as GPs.”

The poll opens on 7 December and closes on 4 January.  It is open to all GPs and GP trainees working in Scotland. Anyone wishing to take part who isn’t already registered must email [email protected] before 21 December.

At a recent special meeting of the Scottish Local Medical Committee Conference delegates were asked to vote on the extent to which the proposed GP contract met particular aims. The results were:

The contract framework addresses the issue of sustainability of funding
Strongly agree – 39%
Agree – 45%
Neither – 10%
Disagree – 5%
Strongly disagree – 2%

The contract framework addresses the issue of risk for GPs and GP practices
Strongly agree – 25%
Agree – 54%
Neither – 9%
Disagree – 9%
Strongly disagree – 2%

The contract framework addresses the issue of the attractiveness of general practice
Strongly agree – 23%
Agree – 56%
Neither – 10%
Disagree – 10%
Strongly disagree – 1%

The contract framework addresses the issue of unsustainable workload
Strongly agree – 42%
Agree – 43%
Neither – 10%
Disagree – 2%
Strongly Disagree – 2%

Results were rounded to the nearest whole number so may not add up to 100%.

For further information please contact:

BMA Scotland, 14 Queen Street, Edinburgh, EH2 1LL
Telephone: 0131 247 3050 | 0131 247 3052 | 0131 247 3018 
For out-of-hours press enquiries:
07768 005 850 
Email: [email protected] 
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