Patients at risk as GPs face forced shutdown – will Primary Medical Care follow Dental Care into being covertly rationed?

Chris Smyth for The Times reports 1st May 2014: Patients at risk as GPs face forced shutdown

Hundreds of thousands of patients face losing their family doctor in a “catastrophic meltdown” caused by funding reforms, GPs’ leaders claim.

Almost 100 practices around the country could go to the wall within months because of arcane changes to the way money is allocated, the Royal College of GPs says, as it calls for an emergency bailout.

Millions more patients in other practices could wait longer to see a doctor because of the knock-on effects if surgeries close.

Ministers are likely to resist calls for more money, pointing out that total funding for GPs has not been cut and that the changes are a long-planned “tidy up” of a notoriously complex payment system, under which some surgeries will get more.

The changes are part of a decade-long attempt to make GP funding fairer, but the college says that after years of rising patient numbers as hospitals gobble up the lion’s share of increased NHS budgets, the loss of the extra cash will tip many surgeries into the red…..

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I wonder how long it will take for Primary Medical Care (GPs) to follow Dental Care and Eye Care into being covertly rationed, and differently in different Post Code areas/regions?

Update 2nd May 2014: Letter from the RCGP Chairman< Maureen Baker, to the members of the college:





This entry was posted in A Personal View, Community Health Councils, General Practitioners, Patient representatives, Political Representatives and activists, Rationing, Stories in the Media on by .

About Roger Burns - retired GP

I am a retired GP and medical educator. I have supported patient participation throughout my career, and my practice, St Thomas; Surgery, has had a longstanding and active Patient Participation Group (PPG). I support the idea of Community Health Councils, although I feel they should be funded at arms length from government. I have taught GP trainees for 30 years, and been a Programme Director for GP training in Pembrokeshire 20 years. I served on the Pembrokeshire LHG and LHB for a total of 10 years. I completed an MBA in 1996, and I along with most others, never had an exit interview from any job in the NHS! I completed an MBA in 1996, and was a runner up for the Adam Smith prize for economy and efficiency in government in that year. This was owing to a suggestion (St Thomas' Mutual) that practices had incentives for saving by being allowed to buy rationed out services in the following year.

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