LMCs conference: 'GPC represents GPs'

GPs expressed their support for the GPC at the LMCs conference yesterday, going against health secretary Alan Johnson's claim that the committee no longer represents its members.

Dr Nigel Hyams, of Salford and Trafford LMC, proposed a motion of no confidence.

‘We applaud you for what you are doing, but our grassroots GPs perceive you as being too nice,' he told the committee.

He called for the GPC to bring in professional negotiators to assist them.

The motion was lost by a large majority, however.

Doctors from East Sussex LMC, who had proposed a motion attacking the GPC's lack of ‘credible strategy' to defend the profession, changed their position at the conference and spoke in favour of the committee, saying they were impressed by its recent work.

GPC chairman Dr Laurence Buckman said that there were limits on what he could do in the face of a government that fails to play fairly.

There was nothing more it could do to prevent the imposition of extended hours, ‘short of taking industrial action', he said.

‘And we don't believe we have the mandate to do that.'

jonn.elledge@haymarket.com

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