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All GPs should be signed off work for stress, argue GP leaders

The pressures of present day general practice are so acute that all GPs should be be signed off immediately with work related stress, GP leaders have proposed.

In a motion which could be debated at the 2016 LMCs Conference this month, Shropshire LMC has called for recognition that the demands of providing quality care with inadequate resources are harming GPs.

This follows Pulse’s national GP burnout survey completed by more than 2,300 GPs which found half were at high risk of work-related burnout, and NHS England’s pledge of £16m to fund a national psychological support service for GPs - which Pulse’s Battling Burnout campaigin was instrumental in securing.

Other motions to be debated include charging overseas visitors for GP appointments and changing legislation to allow nurses to sign ‘fit notes’.

Motion in full

SHROPSHIRE: That conference recognises that the strain on GPs attempting to deliver high quality healthcare to their patients with inadequate resources is such that all GPs should be signed off work for ‘stress’.

Read the LMC Conference agenda in full

Readers' comments (9)

  • Unless we all sign on the same day, that could prove tricky!

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  • Interesting idea and I for one have had plenty of personal experience of this over the years and never been signed off a day for stress.

    In retrospect that was wrong... It's what I have done for many of my patients.

    However the question is
    How can you transform general practice?
    But in the current state that question should be first to address the design of general practice, how it delivers a service and the working week so that it becomes again a manageable profession that is not making doctors ill depressed, suicidal, and looking at resignation as the only option.
    Only then can you consider the other transformation which is 7 day working, shifts of care, addressing demographic and age shifts and ALL the rest.....
    Money alone will simply not do it

    Give a depressed person a million pounds and he will still be depressed,
    However,- address and alleviate a depressed persons emotional distress and they will do wonderful things with the million pounds.

    Time to wake up!


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  • My sentiments exactly...except this situation in General Practice was premeditated, laced with complicity from the 'powers that be'...see you guys in Oz !

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  • Strange that where I am headed now is Oz....

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  • Oz is not as good as a practice in Dorset with £300 per patient
    Just look at gp earnings there
    Part.timers on £100 k on their websites
    Forget oz

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  • Baffling. A GP in dorset 300, a GP in London 120 pounds per patient year.
    I am aware of such horrendous discrepancies between neighbouring practices.
    Is it not absurd that there is such discrimination?
    When a Trust takes over a Failing GP practice it get 25% extra per patient for admin!!, which sum would have kept the the practice from failing in the first place.
    This happens when the organ grinder has 3Cs and the monkeys have 4 A*.
    Time to rewrite GP land because it is so unfair, iniquitous and unjust.
    The only ones who want to keep the status quo are the practices like Devon. Who cares about the GP earning 100 pounds/patient?

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  • Can I sign myself off sick. My GP is not available as his GP has signed him off sick?

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  • If your GP is off sick, you should go AE or call an ambulance, what else?

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  • Would you all sign each off each other for stress because that would be professionally incestuous. The other option is to be referred to a Consultant psychiatrist , so one may have a mental health record and then get referred to the GMC for the patient safety. This really is not a well thought out argument, it is lemming like behaviour. In strife get the support of your patients and they may be persuaded to write to the local MPs.

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