Demand for better representation of 'lost tribe' of locums

A quarter of all GPs work freelance as locums yet they are being ignored within the NHS, according to the National Association of Sessional GPs (NASGP).

A ‘conspiracy of ignorance' means GP locums do not appear in any government statistics and are not properly represented, says the NASGP.

The body estimates that 15,500 (28%) of the 57,000 GPs registered on the GMC's database are locums.

But enquiries to the NHS, the GMC, the Medical Protection Society and the RCGP revealed none of them collected any information on locums.

The NASGP is calling for locums to be given their own committee within the BMA and for more accurate ways of assessing locum numbers and resources.

NASGP chief executive Dr Richard Fieldhouse described locums as a ‘lost tribe of GPs, working in the background'.

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