2,000 GPs get golden hello
The Department of Health has paid out approximately £15 million to nearly 2,000 English GPs in 'golden hello' incentives.
Since the scheme was introduced in March 2001, 1,988 GPs have received a windfall, with 993 qualifying for the higher payment of £10,000
after taking up posts in under-doctored areas.
Details of the scheme emerged in a parliamentary written answer from Health Minister John Hutton to
Brian Cotter, Liberal Democrat MP for Weston-Super-Mare, about the state of GP recruitment.
The response failed to mention crucial figures showing whether there was an overall net increase in GPs after retirements are accounted for.
A department spokesman said these were unavailable.
Mr Hutton's written answer revealed 124 out of 300 PCTs are currently under-
Only five of the 28 English strategic health authorities central London, north-west London, Avon, Gloucestershire and Wiltshire, South West Peninsula and Thames Valley are said to have sufficient doctors.