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GPs go forth

97% of GPs willing to support GPC's push for mass resignation

GPs across Belfast have overwhelmingly thrown their support behind the BMA’s call for undated resignations to force the government to act and save general practice.

At a crisis meeting held last night - 25 October - more than 200 GPs turned out to discuss what can be done to relieve the pressure facing the health service in Northern Ireland.

Some 97% said they would be willing to sign an undated resignation which calls for an urgent rescue package for primary care.

It is the first of five meetings to be held across the country in the coming weeks.

The Northern Ireland GPC is calling on the government to invest 10% of the health budget in safe sustainable GP services.

Other rescue measures include training more GPs to save practices at risk of closure, investing in IT and cutting bureaucracy.

The LMC first put forward a motion to quit the health service if action was not taken was in March, giving the government six months.

Last night’s vote came just hours after health minister, Michelle O’Neill announced a 10-year plan to overhaul the health service in Northern Ireland with a greater emphasis on primary care.

Speaking at last night’s meeting, Northern Ireland GPC chair, Dr Tom Black said the turnout showed just how much pressure GPs were under.

‘We obviously knew things were bad in general practice but we didn’t realise things were that bad.

‘What we have heard tonight are the very issues we have been flagging up in general practice for many months now and unfortunately it looks like it’s crunch time.’

He added: ‘While there were some positive announcements by Minister O’Neill today as part of her health and wellbeing plans, until we have greater clarity about the funding for these initiatives we need to move forward with our own plans.’

Readers' comments (10)

  • That's possible everywhere except in England where we still live in a feudal society and are resigned to stay the vassals in Hunt's court.

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  • Well done NI! Showing the way and standing up for yourselves, at least one part of the UK has realised enough is enough, time for talking and empty platitudes is over, it's time for action! Here's hoping wider GPC will take note...and action...

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  • Took Early Retirement

    Yes, when I saw that headline, I couldn't believe my eyes until I read the article and saw it was NI.
    English GPs will continue to whine but DO nothing.

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  • Exciting. Lets see what happens and then do it in England.

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  • Dear All,
    Well done Tom and the boys. Lets hope we can do the same in England.
    Paul C

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  • just do it!

    obviously in england nothing will happen because the cardigan wearing, honours seeking cardigans run the system and will do whatever they can to keep the status quo and their gold plated pensions even if it means sacrificing the future generations.

    Millenials reading this "theres never been a better time to be a GP" translation " keep slogging away young muppets while we drink champagne at the college"

    comrades you know what and who you need to ditch!!!

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  • Just have mass non payment of GMC fees. No harm to patients, max harm to establishment

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  • sadly - on past form the GPC will find a reason not to pursue. and it will be another let down.

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  • mass non payment for CQC, gmc ,bma.please.
    ask gov. to fund indemnity , right to sue patient for malicious complaint,
    gmc members to be elected by gps. restoration of reimbursement of staff wages for general practice or to restore mpig . bring back seniority payment. patient to pay percentage of drug cost (10%). charge a consultation fee of £10 for one complaint.
    this may help nhs.

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  • Defunding of General Practice nationwide is a deliberate and cynical move with malice aforethought. No question but this Govt. thinks GPs are fools, idiots and worthless.
    The proof is this = In NI, NHS funding share to GPs has fallen from 11 to 5.5% in 11 years.
    At the same time consultation rates has risen from 4 to 6 per patient year and other contacts such as lab results have trebled.
    GPs also see 90% of all contacts for this 5.5%. In fact, we make a mistake if we GPs think this is a sleepwalk. This is a deliberate, sustained attack on GPs, it is not manslaughter, it is murder of GP land.
    The reason Chaand et al do nothing is because they prize gongs over the folk they represent.
    But look at it from the DOH viewpoint, if we GPs are prepared to work for peanuts or less, great.
    Witness the distribution in NI of 62 million extra to the NHS in June 2016. GP land got 800,000. It is time to walk. It is easy to explain to the public how GP land has their funding cut by 50% and how we cannot be idiots any longer.

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