GPs form queue to lead the GPC

The race to replace outgoing GPC chairman Dr Hamish Meldrum could feature more candidates than any similar election in the committee's history.

Acting GPC chairman Dr Laurence Buckman and Dr Andrew Dearden, who stood down as chairman of GPC Wales this week, have confirmed they will stand. GPC negotiator Dr Peter Holden is also expected to stand but was unavailable for comment. Fellow negotiator Dr Richard Vautrey may run, but is discussing it with his family.

Cleveland LMC chairman Dr John Canning, chairman of the BMA's professional fees committee, told GP he might bid for the GPC leadership, and will certainly run for a negotiating post.

GPC members Dr Eric Rose and Dr Peter Fellows are understood to be considering running for GPC chairman, but neither was available for comment.

Dr Buckman and Dr Dearden are the likely frontrunners. Dr Buckman is experienced, having been deputy chairman for three years, while Dr Dearden has built a reputation as a tough negotiator in five years leading GPC Wales.

Dr Vautrey is tipped as a future GPC chairman, but the voting members of the GPC might feel he is inexperienced. Dr Holden is highly regarded, but was described as 'too nice'.

For the GPC chairman to be elected from outside the current negotiators would be unusual.

The deadline for nominations is 5pm on 9 July. Candidates' names will be circulated the
following day and the vote will take place on 19 July.

Nominations are also open for a negotiator in case a current negotiator is elected chairman, and a replacement is required.

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