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Bowel Ca test boycott

The GPC has told GPs they can boycott the Government's national bowel cancer screening programme unless they are paid for the extra work.

As Pulse revealed last week, the National Screening Committee is to rubber-stamp screening using the faecal occult blood test at its meeting in December and nationwide roll-out could begin as early as next summer.

Primary care organisations will co-ordinate testing but GPs will have to check the notes of every 50 to 69-year-old to assess their suitability for screening and counsel them.

GPC negotiator Dr Laurence Buckman said the new contract would not cover GP payment for any work done under the programme. He backed the test as 'eminently sensible' but added: 'It's new work. If you're not paid, you don't have to do it.'

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