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Other key conference decisions

Round-up of conference votes

• The conference called on the GPC to vigorously oppose moves towards a civil standard of justice in fitness-to-practise cases under the regulation white paper.

A motion calling for the GMC, which is fast-tracking the move, to no longer be funded by the profession was passed as a reference, stopping just short of becoming official policy.

• The BMA's alternative plan for the future of the NHS was branded a 'lost opportunity' by LMCs, which said it 'fails to address the threat to general practice' posed by Government policies.The conference backed the body's proposals for an executive NHS management board but attacked the document for failing to stress the vital role of GPs and training.

• Representatives voted to instruct the GPC to negotiate fees for mentoring of non-medical prescribers.They also voted for negotiations on funding for practice nurse training and a national training system.

• Half the GPs in East Yorkshire, including GPC chair Dr Hamish Meldrum, have been branded inappropriate prescribers by their PCT. For statins, only three GPs were not classed as excessive prescribers.

Dr Andrew Green of East Yorkshire LMC said GPs fell into the category simply because their generic prescription levels were below average.The conference voted for an end to the 'misuse' of annexe 8 of the 2006/7 GMS contract, which controls the excessive prescribing of drugs, and demanded the GPC collect evidence of invisible, local-level 'drug rationing'.

• GPs have called for the construction of independent sector treatment centres to be stopped immediately.

LMCs said the development of ISTCs was destabilising and stripping the NHS of its assets. Dr Marcus Bicknell, a GP in Nottingham and a committee member at Nottinghamshire LMC, proposed the motion. He said: 'This is the privatisation of the NHS through the front door.'

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