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A faulty production line

No community hospital opt-out means No vote

GP negotiators' failure to win an automatic opt-out from 24-hour responsibility for GPs at community hospitals has prompted Dr Peter Ewing to vote No in the contract ballot.

Dr Ewing said GPs with community hospital contracts would have to renegotiate their deals with primary care organisations, many of whom will be unwilling to change their terms.

Ministers ordered community hospital contracts be negotiated separately from the GMS contract.

Dr Ewing, a GP in Crieff, Perthshire, said: 'What I want to know is, if I want to opt out how much will it cost and who will provide cover?

'The contract does not contain any detail. I feel quite angry at the Government, and at the negotiators for not digging their heels in.' He added: 'It's an issue of absolute importance to rural GPs but we just don't know what's going to happen. I know colleagues who have voted No for the same reason.'

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