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GPs fight off new attack on staff pay

GP partners have angrily rejected claims they are exploiting staff, after coming under attack from both their salaried colleagues and practice nurses.

A survey of nurses fomented the row over staff pay after finding just one in three had received a bonus for work under the QOF, and only 29% felt their extra pay reflected the workload.

More than half the 183 nurses surveyed by Independent Nurse also accused partners of not reinvesting profit generated from the QOF in the practice.

The results followed accusations from the Department of Health that GPs had reduced average practice nurse pay.

Lynn Young, primary health care adviser for the Royal College of Nursing, told Pulse: ‘The GP can walk away with a much-enhanced salary, while the rest of the team gets nothing.'

Salaried GPs also joined the fray, with plans to launch an online petition calling for an end to ‘exploitation' by GP partners.

Dr Umair Ahmad, a non-principal GP in East Grinstead, West Sussex, who is setting up the petition, said: ‘There should be a cap on partners' pay so they are not so driven by it.'

But accusations of exploitation by staff have prompted a wave of angry letters to Pulse.

Dr Peter Coleman, a GP on the Isle of Wight, said the claims were ‘clearly rubbish'. And Dr Phil Dommett, a GP in Falmouth, Cornwall, said: ‘Rather than knocking "fat cats", why not trumpet how general practice has thrived?'

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