GPs see no alternative to the imposed contract

The early signs are that the profession could 'cave in to bullying' and accept the government's extended hours ultimatum, because they see no alternative.

Only a small minority of GPs are saying a positive 'yes' to offering longer opening as defined by the DoH in return for a 1.5 per cent pay rise, but the bulk of the profession could be dragged along by inertia.

More than 80 per cent of 300 Leeds GPs abstained when asked for a show of hands for the government's offer.

'Most of the meeting appeared to have been a capitulation to the PCT and their bullying paymasters,' said Dr Alistair Cameron, of Pudsey.

Dr Katie Gaunt, a GP in Beeston, said: 'The general feeling was one of acceptance of what's happening.'

GPC negotiators are giving GPs no guidance on how to vote. But individual GPC members are making their feelings plain.

GPC veteran Dr Fay Wilson said the profession should reject the DoH offer. She said: 'If we vote "yes", we lose the ability to negotiate further.'

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