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Independents' Day

Population surge prompts pay call

GPs in Scotland are asking for an increase to their global sum payments because a surge in the population has left them out of pocket.

GPC negotiators accepted a freeze in the global sum for 2006/7 when they agreed contract amendments on the basis that there would be no changes to population size.

But figures released by the Scottish Executive show the number of people registered with a GP has risen by 46,000, largely due to immigration from Eastern Europe. GPs in Northern Ireland have also seen unexpected increases in the population with no additional resources.

Dr Dean Marshall , chair of GPC Scotland, said: 'We signed

a three-year deal and we

were monitoring the situation. When the contract was negotiated, the populations seemed to be stable.

'The Executive have said they won't increase the sum this year, but this needs to be addressed.'

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