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GPC must resist sale of goodwill

In the early years of NHS general practice the sale of goodwill was largely achieved by making incoming prospective partners work for many years as 'assistants with a view' or

at a financial disadvantage to the senior partner. Over time general practice partnerships have been strengthened as exploitation of junior partners has disappeared.

Now ministers have caught GPs and the GPC by surprise by suddenly announcing their intention to allow the sale of goodwill, albeit partial. Their intention is to make general practice a more attractive place for private companies to invest in.

The GPC must do more than it has done to resist this move which can only accelerate the fragmentation of GP services.

As yet there is no threat to the core of general practice but GPs will want to know that the GPC has more in its locker than warnings.

The Government has a strategy to break up general practice. The GPC needs one to stop it.

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