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Plans would aid GP paediatrics, not hive it off

We are writing regarding your story 'NHS to take care of children away from GPs'.

We have developed a range of recommendations to support GPs in building their expertise in dealing with children.

Rather than 'stripping paediatrics from GPs', our recommendations give GPs stronger support and have received the backing of many local clinicians who have taken the time to fully consider them.

Clinicians from across Yorkshire and Humber made a number of recommendations for ways our local communities could improve children's healthcare and children's GPs were just one such suggestion. Any approach would need to be thoroughly tested before moves were made to implement any change.

The recommendations for the children's pathway were developed by clinicians - not managers - from across our region and feedback from doctors was crucial. All agreed we could do more to increase paediatric expertise in primary care.

We know only 15% of our children achieve NICE recommended levels of diabetic control. Poor diabetic control in childhood increases the risk of major complications such as kidney failure and the risk of amputation or blindness in early adult life. Nearly all our children with diabetes are managed in secondary care rather than in community settings closer to home.

We remain, as ever, open to ideas and suggestions about how we can support our clinicians to make those much needed improvements.

From Professor Chris Welsh, medical director, NHS Yorkshire and Humber and Next Stage Review lead, Dr Ian Lewis, Clinical Pathway Group chair, Children's Pathway, and Dr Eric Kelly, GP and Clinical Pathway Group member, Children's Pathway

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