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GPs who want to retain their out-of-hours pressed to opt out

A group of GPs who want to keep their out-of-hours responsibility are being pressured by their primary care trust to opt out.

Around a quarter of GPs in Wigan want to hang on to 24-hour responsibility, but Ashton, Leigh and Wigan PCT has argued the GPs will not meet the Government's Carson standards for care. Dr David Brodie, chair of Wigan LMC, said the trust was planning a nurse-run service but GPs were worried the move would mean more patients attending morning surgery.

'They are making it a bit tricky for people to opt in,' he said. 'The PCT is visiting 30 practices to get answers on out-of-hours. They are saying to singlehanded GPs that all telephone calls would have to be taped and you would have to do that in your own home.'

A spokesman for Ashton, Wigan and Leigh PCT denied that any pressure was being applied to opt out.

'It's an individual choice for GPs,' he said.

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