Video: GPC urges government to reverse 'damaging' contract plans

GPC chairman Dr Laurence Buckman has urged the government to scrap its plans to overhaul the GMS contract in 2013/14, warning the changes will 'damage' general practice and patient care.

Dr Laurence Buckman: DH must reverse contract overhaul
Dr Laurence Buckman: DH must reverse contract overhaul

Speaking to GP, Dr Buckman said industrial action was not part of the GPC’s planned response to DH plans to overhaul the GP contract which include axing MPIG and forcing GPs to earn back QOF funding through new directed enhanced services.

Dr Buckman urged ministers to reconsider their contract plans after the BMA submitted its full response to the DH’s GP contract consultation yesterday.

The BMA submission includes a survey of nearly 8,000 GPs. Nine out of ten GPs who took part in the survey said the contract changes would undermine their ability to offer good quality care to their patients.

‘I hope the government will listen to our comments and suggestions and read them carefully and decide not to fall into the Mid Staffs trap of bullying a profession into submission,’ Dr Buckman said.

Asked if GPs would call for industrial action if the government didn’t listen, he said: ‘GPs, I don’t think, will call for industrial action because that won’t achieve very much.

‘It is impossible for us to take industrial action in the normal sense of the word and anything we do is likely to adversely affect patients. We think this imposition is going to adversely affect patients more than enough without us adding to it.

'That doesn’t mean we won’t do other things but industrial action in the conventional sense of the word I don’t think that has much of a future and I don’t think many GPs would do it. I certainly wouldn’t be asking them unless of course it turned out that that was the only alternative. But I don’t really believe the profession will want to do that and it is not part of our planned response to this imposition.’

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