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Investing in GP services could save Northern Ireland £53m

Investing just £2.1m a year in general practice could save £53m for the health service in Northern Ireland, an RCGP-commissioned report has found.

The study, carried out by professional services firm Deloitte, found that £13m a year could be saved by investing in GPs and practice nurses, which it says would reduce A&E visits.

It says that the extra investment in general practice would help increase access for patients and would therefore have a knock-on effect of reducing the number of patients attending A&E services.

Dr Shauna Fannin, deputy chair (policy) for RCGP Northern Ireland, said: ‘This report shows that investing in general practice should be an “economic must.” It is time for the Government to invest in primary care teams of GPs and nurses who deliver incredible value for money.’

Dr Fannin continued: ‘We urge the health minister to begin the process of investing in general practice in order to realise huge savings across the NHS.’

This comes after the RCGP presented the Northern Ireland assembly with a UK-wide petition of 300,000 signatures calling for more investment in general practice last month.

This included 16,208 signatories from Northern Ireland – the highest per population of any of the UK countries, 

Readers' comments (5)

  • http://www.theguardian.com/society/2014/nov/28/nhs-spending-gps-hospital-doctors-patient

    I think this is the story. Apparently every £1 invested in GP land will save the NHS £5

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  • Took Early Retirement

    Indeed. A simple example would be to have a minor injuries LES in much of the country, BUT, the PCTs usually refused it, in the hope we would do the work for free. Now the CCGs cannot/will not do it as everyone screams "CONFLICT OF INTEREST". Despite the clear savings to the NHS overall and a modest improvement to GP income. Personally, I think it is the latter that trumps everything on the DOH's eyes:- Anything that improves GP profits will under no circumstances be allowed.
    And so the almighty mess continues.

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  • so what we need are in fact.... PCTs?

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  • Forget PCTs - let's go back to FSHA's or (for the more longer toothed of us) FPC

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  • It is like this - we are supposedly Independent Contractors working on average list size not on workload, so as the workload goes up and up we do not need to be paid any extra, only the same list size wage. This means that today we see 92% of consultations on 8% of the budget.
    Therefore mathematically we should be able to do almost 99% of workload on 8.6% of the budget saving huge sums of money, because we GPs have to be paid little or none at all. We are mugs enough to do the work anyway.

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