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Independents' Day

GPC tells Reid to pause for breath

GP negotiators have called on new Health Secretary John Reid to slow the pace of change in the NHS and ditch the Department of Health's 'obsession with targets'.

Dr Laurence Buckman, GPC negotiator, said the resignation of Alan Milburn after four years in the role gave the department an opportunity to 'pause for breath'.

Dr Buckman said: 'He

[Mr Milburn] was a good fundraiser but it will be

important to see what happens in the reshuffle as when

ministers change it's an opportunity to see whether their broom sweeps in a different direction.'

Mr Milburn, who has two young children, cited family reasons for his resignation.

'[Politics] is a completely crazy way to run your life ­ and I have to get a life,' he said.

John Reid was previously Labour Party chair and is one of the Cabinet's renowned bruisers.

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