'Monopoly is over, so protect yourselves'
Dr George Rae told GPs they needed to develop a proactive approach to save their independent contractor status at a meeting in Newcastle last week.
The advice is at the core of a paper he has produced, Shape or Be Shaped, which warns GPs they have just a few months to make decisions on practice-based commissioning and taking on APMS contracts or face being targeted by private firms.
Waiting to be asked to commission would leave GPs 'very exposed' to competition from private providers, Dr Rae told the meeting of 50 GPs. GPs also had the chance to bolt-on APMS contracts or to set up companies mixing NHS services, management and private contracts, he said.
Dr Rae, secretary of Newcastle and North Tyneside LMC, said GPs could no longer be under the 'delusion' they still had a monopoly in primary care.