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GP leaders don't want more non-doctor practice partners

GP leaders have voted against encouraging non-GPs to become partners, at the UK-wide LMCs Conference in Liverpool.

GPs in Hampshire and Isle of Wight proposed the motion to ‘encourage non-GP staff to become partners to further increase the sustainability of the partnership model’, adding that the model is ‘the most efficient and cost-effective way of delivering general practice’.

However, Dr Pooja Arora, an LMC representitive from Birmingham, said the motion ’sends a very confusing message to the Government’.

She said: ’How can we ask the Government to incentivise news schemes to invest in GPs and yet look at other ways to keep general practice sustainable?’ 

She added: ’This is not about GPs being selfish. This is about GPs who have, who will and always will be the best advocate for their patients and know what is safe practice.’

Her comments come after the health secretary announced a review into partnership model, alongside the BMA and the RCGP

However, other GPs spoke emphatically about the need to save general practice from ongoing waves of practice closures.

Speaking on the motion to ’make the public aware of the mounting threat to the system of general practice’, Dr Shaba Nabi, an LMC representitive from Bristol and a member of the BMA's agenda committee, said the rate at which GP 'are handing back their contracts is quite frankly a national disgrace'.

She said that in Bristol three practices handed back their contract in the last two years.

She told the conference: 'I believe the public have absolutely no idea about how vulnerable their local practice might be and there needs to be a mass media campaign highlighting the loss of their local GP.'

This comes after a Bristol practice with over 17,000 patients handed back its contract because it can no longer offer a 'fair and adequate' service to patients in December.

Motion in full

HAMPSHIRE AND ISLE OF WIGHT: That conference believes the partnership model to be the most efficient and cost-effective way of delivering general practice and demands that government:

(i) does everything possible to support and sustain this model

(ii) invest in an incentive scheme to encourage GPs into permanent roles

(iii) needs to explore all avenues to encourage older GPs to remain in practice

(iv) encourage non-GP staff to become partners to further increase the sustainability of the partnership model.

AVON: That conference is concerned about the number of recent practice closures and

(i) believes that unmanaged dispersals lead to patient safety issues

(ii) believes that more needs to be done to make the public aware of the mounting threat to the system of general practice

(iii) demands details of the contractual arrangements to provide ongoing primary care after a practice closure, are made public

(iv) instructs GPC to take urgent action to ensure the protection of ‘last man standing’ GPs from any additional costs of resignation or retirement resulting from practice closure

Readers' comments (9)

  • David Banner

    Non GPs aren’t so stupid. Who buys shares in the Titanic when it’s just hit an iceberg?

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  • if they can see 40 odd patients, countless calls etc then I happy for anyone to be partner.

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  • Look here guys, let’s be honest with ourselves.

    It takes, is it 6-12 weeks, for a nurse to go on a prescribing course and start giving out BNF drugs, they are effectively doing the work we are doing with high patient satisfaction.

    Just like robotics, Amazon, etc is disrupting the status quo, similarly haven’t we really overindulged ourselves in the length of time we train and eventually set up as a GP-some 10yrs-nurses can do it in a tiny amount of time. After 10yrs of training we are treated like monkeys and meant to deliver good medical practice in 10 minutes, whereas ANP deliver very good medical practice in 15 minutes per patient. Go figure...

    So let’s be honest, we are the makers of our doom, if i had a chance i would either have become a hosp dr or a ANP, never ever a GP in the NHS. I bewitched by, amongst other things, the romantic , undeliverable roger neighbours, silvermans, and other nicy nicy consultation styles taught to us in our VTS.

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  • Hi Globeman..... who do the ANPs come to when they can't sort it out?

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  • ANPs are good, they definitely have a role with common conditions, but when it comes to the obscure diagnosis, the mental health, the polypharmacy and multi morbidity, the minor ops......the wheels com off. Can you show me a clinic that can offer the same outcomes with just ANPs? A good GP can achieve much more with much less.... specialists aren't so special..... narrow knowledge base means they often fall over as soon as they stray outside or on the verges of what they really know.... this happens more than people realise. This week a nephrologist not knowing about methotrexate, last week a cardiologist prescribing fenofibrate when he shouldn't.....a stable system needs someone with a broad knowledge base to underpin it.

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  • Globeman if you want to become a cherry picker or narrowist (Oops I meant specialist) then apply to retrain. If you're not happy with your status quo either change your circumstances or change your attitude to them. Most of our dis-satisfaction comes from the inequality between general practice and narrowists. They get paid more for knowing less. If we were all paid equally per hour what would you pick?

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  • This isn't about retaining status for GPs. It's about what a "partner" can do.

    I can see patient, do management and take final responsibility on all activities for my practice.

    I'm happy for anyone who can do the same and give up their employee rights and pay 14% more on pension with just 100K/year to become a partner. Doubt I'll find anyone stupid enough though

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  • there is a problem with employing 'noctors' to see all the easy stuff. The Gps themselves are then left a morale sapping heavy workload of heartsinks and the job becomes too onerous to work full time. Just look at how many doctors now only work part time to see the result. I firmly believe we need to see straight-forward stuff to keep the load bearable and to stay in touch with out healthy population if only for our own sanity and morale.

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