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Leading primary care academics are calling on GPs to support the Great Pulse Patient Survey after revealing their concerns over the Government's health agenda.

The survey, a joint initiative with Newcastle and North Tyneside LMC, aims to guage patients' true views on the aspects of general practice they care about most.

Results from patients in Newcastle and North Tyneside have already shown widespread support for continuity of care and safeguarding the traditional role of their GPs.

Professor Aziz Sheikh, professor of primary care of the University of Edinburgh, said the results of a national survey could be 'very important'.

He said: 'A lot of the Government's changes are undermining continuity of care.'

Professor Allyson Pollock, chair of health policy and health services research at University College London, also urged GPs to help create a better national picture of patient feeling.

She said: 'The Department of Health is now planning to privatise and contract out huge areas of primary care services and it is doing it in a circumspect fashion without proper public engagement.'

Professor David Haslam, former RCGP chair and a GP in Ramsey, Cambridgeshire, said a national picture of patients' views would be 'extremely interesting'. He said: 'There has been a lot of development towards those who have acute health needs and want to be seen today, but one size doesn't fit all.'

The Great Pulse Patient Survey

How to get involved

·For a copy of the patient questionnaire, together with guidelines on how to conduct the survey in your practice, see the leaflet inserted in Pulse last week (May 21) or e-mail us at pulse@cmpinformation.com

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