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At the heart of general practice since 1960

RCGP stung into fighting back and promoting GPs' role

The RCGP has called on decision-makers to recognise the role of GPs in 'holding together' the NHS.

Professor Mayur Lakhani, RCGP chair, said the college was 'deeply concerned' that GPs had become 'easy targets' for deep-seated NHS problems.

He said: 'There clearly is a disconnect between the negative portrayal of GPs and the high

regard in which GPs are held by patients. It is time to acknowledge the value of general practice and the unique but largely ignored contribution of GPs in holding the NHS together.'

He also stressed general practice's 'hidden role' as a safety net for elderly and vulnerable patients, and GPs' status as clinical experts, trainers, teachers, researchers and innovators.

The hardening of stance came after Justin Wilkes, chair of the health and medical group of the Chartered Institute of Public Relations, criticised the RCGP for not doing more

to defend the profession.

He told Pulse: 'The RCGP is not proactive in supporting GPs. They could be lobbying the Government and shouting about the positives.'

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