GPC move on ballot delay shows strong leadership
The GPC's decision to delay the new contract ballot by just two weeks is clearly against the spirit, though not the letter, of the resolution narrowly passed by the special conference of LMCs. It is a strong move a high-risk strategy and it will not make the GPC popular with grassroots GPs. But popularity is not the issue here.
What the profession really needs at the moment is effective leadership leadership out of the current crisis into our uncertain future. The status quo is unsustainable and any change will bring with it a wealth of worries and fears. These fears will never be abolished to everybody's satisfaction and there will always be details in the contract options that can only get sorted during implementation.
The GPC decision is a welcome sign of strong leadership. It says 'We believe the totality of the contract options will bring significant benefit to GPs' and 'We don't believe that yet more negotiation will produce a better deal'.
Finally, and perhaps most importantly, the GPC decision affirms Dr John Chisholm's position that negotiation is a continuing process. 'It's not all perfect, but the framework is there. With a shared determination, we can make it work for all GPs.'
Dr James Heathcote
Bromley LMC chair, Kent