Seeing your GP shouldn’t be like booking an Uber driver you’ll never see again, MPs say, as they advocate a limit on the length of surgery patient lists.
In a large 65-page report on the future of GPs, the Care and Welfare Committee said that GP-patient relationships should be from cradle to grave.
MEPs want the government and NHS England to abolish ‘micromanagement’ frameworks that measure too many targets ‘thus risking patients mutating in numbers’.
They should instead focus on limiting the number of patients on a GP’s list to, say, 2,500, which would slowly decline to about 1,850 five years from now as more GPs are recruited as planned, it said.
There were just 27,558 full-time, fully qualified GPs working in England last month, 1.6 percent less than the 18,000 registered in June 2021. It was 5.3 percent less than the more than 29,000 employed in June 2017.
Two-thirds of GP appointments in England last month were in person, according to the latest data from NHS Digital. The 66.1 percent figure is still well below the 80 percent average before the pandemic hit. However, it is the highest rate since March 2020, when the UK was plunged into its first national lockdown as the coronavirus swept across the country.
MPs said: ‘Seeing your GP shouldn’t be like calling a call center or booking an Uber driver you’ll never see again: relationship-based care is essential for patient safety and patient experience.
‘General practice should really be the crowning glory of the NHS, one of the services most valued by its patients.
“For doctors, it should enable a cradle-to-grave relationship with patients that is impossible for other specialties, but infinitely more satisfying for many.”
MEPs stressed that they believe the ‘common practice is in crisis’ and urged the government and the NHSE to recognize this and take ‘bolder’ action to address it.
“Patients face unacceptably poor access to, and experiences with, primary care practices and patient safety are jeopardized by unsustainable pressures.
“Given their reluctance to acknowledge the crisis in GP practice, we are not convinced that the government or NHS England are prepared to tackle the problems in the service with sufficient urgency,” they said.
The report, which received evidence from hundreds of GPs, charities and other health professionals, emphasized that ‘the root cause’ of the crisis is ‘simple’, that ‘there are not enough GPs to meet the ever-increasing demands of the service’.
There were an estimated 27.5 million GP appointments in May this year, more than two million more than in 2019 before the pandemic, according to NHS Digital data included in the report.
About 48.5 percent of appointments in August were with GPs, while the same proportion was with other practice staff, such as nurses. Mode was not logged in 3% of consultations
Nearly half of GP appointments are made on the same day, but there is huge variation across the country
The assistant of the general practitioner sees you now! NHS will hire 1,000 recruits to carry out basic checks
The NHS is hiring more than 1,000 ‘GP assistants’ to give GPs more time to treat patients this winter, it was announced last week.
They will free up thousands of appointments by doing administrative tasks and basic health checks previously done by GPs.
Surgeons can now claim additional funding to hire the additional staff, who will not need medical training and will earn around £24,000 a year.
They receive on-the-job training that allows them to draw blood, administer injections and measure patients’ blood pressure and heart rate.
But over the same period, the number of qualified full-time equivalent GPs in the NHS fell by nearly 500 from 28,094 to 27,627.
MPs said GPs work harder, have more burnout and are ‘demoralised’.
More than 40 percent of GPs and trainee GPs said they were likely to leave GP practice in the next five years in a survey conducted by the Royal College of GPs (RCGP).
It comes as a report published by the General Medical Council warned that the NHS’s ‘reliance’ on international medical graduates (IMGs) was ‘precarious’.
It said the number of IMGs had increased by 40 per cent in the past five years, while the number of UK graduates increased by 10 per cent.
In the report, RCGP Vice-President for Professional Development, Dr Margaret Ikpoh, said 47 percent of GP trainees come from the international community. In places like Hull and Grimsby, up to 70 percent is international, she said.
“While that’s a good thing, we’re ultimately putting trainees who aren’t particularly familiar with the nuances of the NHS into a system that’s already under-graduated and stressed and that may not have the capacity or space to deliver the training they need.” to become partners,” said Dr Ikpoh.
Therese Coffey’s Plan for Patients promised to introduce a two-week wait for GP appointments last month.
But the report said that “although well-intentioned, [it] does not solve the fundamental capacity problem that causes poor GP access’.
It also emerged that the NHS’s national director of primary care, Dr Amanda Doyle, said the two-week expectation was ‘reasonable’, but GPs ‘just can’t live up to it’ due to staff shortages.
Professor Martin Marshall, Chair of the Royal College of GPs, said: ‘The Committee’s report recognizes the importance of GPs and our teams in building trusting relationships with patients and providing continuity of care, which has been proven to improve health outcomes. of patients, and benefits for the NS.
“This is the kind of care GPs want to provide and the kind of care many of our patients want, but amid the current pressures facing GP practices it is becoming increasingly difficult to deliver, despite the efforts of GP teams.”