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At the heart of general practice since 1960

GPs' premises plans dashed as PCTs use cash to cover deficits

One of your correspondents has little idea about the decline in partnerships (Letters, September 3).

They claim to be a newly-qualified GP trainer, but 'struggling to find a partnership', when in fact it is necessary to have a practice approval visit before a trainer can be appointed/qualified.

They claim to be more highly qualified than the principal they work for, having membership of three royal colleges, but forget that at least two of these must be of no relevance to general practice, while much of their hospital experience likewise may be of little relevance.

Their employer may have many years' relevant experience in general practice, and may have attended many relevant training courses since their 'basic' medical qualification, possibly without picking up strings of letters.

After all the qualification registrable with the GMC to be able to be on the GP register is 'T(GP)', not MRCGP.

They claim there is no retirement age for GPs, who may work until they are 80. No doctor may work as an NHS GP unless their name is on a 'providers list' of a local health board or PCT. I understand it is usual for names to be added to the list subject to the restriction that they must be not over 70 at the time, and that the list is reviewed annually, although this may differ in other countries.

Principals did not vote for anything in the new PMS contract. PMS contracts are negotiated locally with individual practices, or through the LMC possibly. The correspondent might mean to refer to the nGMS contract, but non-principals did not miss out on the voting there either.

In job hunting, cultivate relations with an employing practice that might benefit from a new partner, as many practices are taking on salaried GPs as partners after getting to know them.

Dr David Church

Machynlleth

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