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At the heart of general practice since 1960

Bonus would stop Scots GPs retiring

A retention scheme paying GPs bonuses to persuade them not to retire early could keep seven in 10 GPs in Scotland practising past the age of 60, research finds.

The study of 348 GPs in Scotland found 71 per cent of respondents aged 55 or over planned to retire at or before their 60th birthday. One in five said they planned to retire before 60 and half said they would retire at 60.

But 70 per cent would be interested in a post-retirement retention initiative similar to the scheme in England under which GPs are paid £2,000 a year for every year they work from 60 to 65.

The study by NHS Education for Scotland concluded: 'Many experienced GPs on the point of retirement would be interested in a retention scheme along the lines of the existing retainer scheme.

'Even if only half of those who expressed an interest in such a scheme applied it would provide the equivalent of 40 full-time posts in Scotland, which could partly offset the recruitment crisis.'

Three GPs out of five interested in staying on said they would prefer to be retained by their current practice.

The research, published in the BMJ last week, found high levels of disillusionment

over workload among older GPs.

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