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GPs happier than ever and maintaining income levels, DH tells DDRB

The Department of Health has claimed GPs are happier than ever and are earning the same amount they did two years ago, in evidence to the doctors’ pay review body.

In a rosy assessment of the state of general practice, the DH said it estimated GP net earnings would remain static this year at £107,700 per year since 2010/11, with the ratio of earnings to expenses at the expected level.

Pointing to evidence from the National Work Life Survey in 2011 which it said represented the ‘most up to date comparable evidence in measuring GP satisfaction’, the DH said that in 2010 GP working hours remained unchanged since 2008 – at 41.4 hours per week - and happiness was 4.9 points, up 0.2 points on a seven-point scale, compared with 2008.

The DH reiterated its warning to GPs that the 1.5% uplift would be taken off the table if the GPC does not agree to its proposed deal announced last month.

If a negotiated settlement is not agreed, then the DH will ask the Review Body on Doctors’ and Dentists’ Remuneration (DDRB) to make a recommendation on what the uplift to GP pay should be.

This submission prepares the way for this assessment, with the DH planning to submit evidence on the uplift to GP pay at a later stage if it cannot reach a negotiated settlement with the GPC.


The evidence says: ‘GMP pay has increased in cash and real terms relative to other NHS staff groups. On a cash basis, pay has increased by 46% over the period 2002-03 to 2009-10 (the latest year for which figures are available).

‘This compares to an increase of 36.4% for consultants and 29.9% for nurses over the same period.’

The GPC has walked away from any further negotiations following the Government’s publishing its proposals at the end of October, hitting out at unworkable workload objectives set out by the DH.

The evidence adds: ‘The Department hopes that a negotiated settlement with the GPC can still be reached and it has indicated that, as part of a negotiated settlement, it would remain willing to offer a 1.5% uplift in gross income.

‘If, however, a negotiated settlement cannot be reached, the Department will invite the DDRB to make recommendations on uplift.’

Readers' comments (60)

  • gosh. . .that statement form the DOH paints an unrecognisably different situation from the one I find myself in - rapidly falling income and high levels of stress, with threats of both worsening next year. . . don't know whether to laugh or cry !!

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  • Just read this out to a group of GP colleagues sitting in a CCG meeting that is due to end after 9pm and that's after our day jobs!! Made us laugh though

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  • Thank you all for making me feel better tonight!
    I thought something was wrong with me or my practice.
    I suggest we develop a Balint group and an open GP forum where we can show anyone, including the DOH if interested, what our happiness really looks like.
    GPs tend to accept all the pressures from the patients, PCTs and the secondary care and just get on with their jobs like robots working on a conveyor belt with no breaks for a glass of water at least. There is no time even for moaning anymore.

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  • They (DH) really haven t got a clue have they? It's quite scary how absurd their comments are and how far from reality they are, especially given that they actually seem to believe this crap that they spout non stop...

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  • This statement by DH so out of touch that farcical!! I know of no GP who 'happy' in current job and certainly nane who feel income remains same as was several years ago. Which planet are they on and where do they get this information from?? Hope that our representatives dismiss this rubbish asap Somehow doubt it though judging by previous attempts to represent what really going on at coalface!

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  • average list size 1,520 - average GP pay £107,000

    Where are we all going wrong - these are just fantasy figures

    If the government would pay me £107,000 for looking after 1,500 I'd not be retiring early when I'm 58 - that would be "part-time" for me but with a wacking pay increase - I wouldn't retire

    Reality is my best pay year was 2004/05 - every year since its fallen - my accountant predicts I'll be back to pre-nGMS 2002/03 level profit share pay by next year - as a single hander with same staffing levels as 1998 but a heck of a lot more work - any wonder I'm going to retire early.

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  • Having just arrived home after a relatively short day today (11 hours rather than the usual 12) in a far from happy mood, to borrow a phrase from my children, LOL......

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  • What's the bet this will be all over the news.

    (Sorry I've not watched the new tonight as I'm still in work, just finishing of the paper works having had no lunch/dinner/breakfast - did have a cheeky mince pie in between work though!)

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  • 14hour days are not uncommon and a lot more expected from primary care. We are doing far more secondary care work unpaid.

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  • Cobblers

    Well I never did! Politicians lying.

    Evidence please. NOW.

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