Fund GPs to handle rising demand, urges BMA Scotland Christmas message

Extra funding to support general practice will be vital to help the profession cope with rising demand, BMA Scotland chairman Dr Peter Bennie has warned in a Christmas message.

Dr Peter Bennie: BMA Scotland chairman urges politicians to protect future NHS
Dr Peter Bennie: BMA Scotland chairman urges politicians to protect future NHS

With Scottish parliament elections just months away in early May 2016, the BMA Scotland leader urged politicians to set out how they could protect the health service in the face of rising demand and a 'growing funding gap'.

'The NHS in Scotland faces serious challenges and the country’s political parties need to focus on these issues as we move towards the Scottish parliament elections in 2016,' said Dr Bennie.

The warning echoes demands in a manifesto published earlier this year by BMA Scotland. Dr Bennie welcomed additional NHS investment set out in Scotland's draft 2016/17 budget but warned that pressure on the health service would continue to rise as the population aged.

GP funding crisis

'The struggle to recruit and retain doctors adds to that burden significantly,' he said. 'Unfilled vacancies put pressure on existing NHS staff, already dealing with high workloads. This is a concern that doctors express to us regularly, along with the belief that in the long term this will have a detrimental impact on their ability to deliver the sustainable, high-quality care people in Scotland need and deserve.

'BMA Scotland’s call to support Scottish general practice has also been recognised with the Scottish government announcing increased investment in general practice. This is urgently needed as GPs face huge demands in workload with the number of doctors choosing to train as GPs falling and a number of senior GPs set to retire in the near future. Extra funding for primary care development will be vital to support Scottish general practice as demand on community based services continues to increase.'

Dr Bennie added: 'The funding gap faced by the NHS set against rising demand and the impact of increasing consultant, specialty doctor and GP vacancies and unfilled trainee posts cannot be ignored and we must establish ways to make Scotland’s NHS a more attractive place to work.'

Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins


Already registered?

Sign in

Follow Us:

Just published

Rebuild GP campaign logo

Hundreds of GPs sign open letter highlighting 'decades of neglect' of general practice

Hundreds of GPs have signed an open letter to patients warning that 'decades of neglect'...

Dr Farah Jameel

PCNs are 'existential threat' to GP independent contractor model, BMA warns

The BMA's England GP committee has warned that PCNs pose an 'existential threat'...

Houses of Parliament

GP partnerships 'like collapsing Jenga stack' after Javid threat to nationalise practices

Sajid Javid's decision to back a report calling for the end of the GMS contract within...

£20 notes spread out

VAT trap for PCNs could strip millions of pounds from general practice

Tens of millions of pounds could be stripped from general practice because work carried...

Talking General Practice logo

Podcast: Is the BMA representing GPs effectively, why GPs face a pension tax hit, and views on the workload crisis

In our regular news review the team discusses representation of GPs, a new survey...

Man sleeping

NICE guidance on insomnia backs app to replace sleeping pills

Hundreds of thousands of people with insomnia could be offered treatment via a mobile...