Responding to analysis from the Trades Union Congress (TUC)1, which shows GP numbers have fallen by almost 1,000 in the last four years, Dr Richard Vautrey, BMA GP committee chair, said:
“As we’ve said time and time again, there are simply not enough GPs to meet demand and guarantee safe, quality care to patients. And as doctors stretch themselves more thinly, they risk their own health and wellbeing.
“As this analysis shows, despite pledges to increase numbers by 5,000 by next year, we’ve seen the exact opposite – with hundreds fewer family doctors than we did in 2015. While election promises to boost GP numbers are necessary and encouraging, politicians must learn from mistakes of the past.
“This means both encouraging more young doctors to choose general practice, while retaining those talented and experienced GPs who work tirelessly in their communities every day. And it means tackling unsustainable workloads and mounting bureaucracy, while scrapping damaging pension rules that are causing so many doctors to reduce their hours or leave the profession altogether.”
Notes to editors
The BMA is a 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.
- See the TUC's website for more information.