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Gold, incentives and meh

Oh Lord – why Darzi is missing the point

Editor’s blog

jaimie kaffash 2 duo 3x2

jaimie kaffash 2 duo 3x2

It’s hardly a surprise that a headline with ‘Lord Darzi’ – the former surgeon and health minister - and ‘salaried model’ attracts the ire of GPs.

Following on from his failed polyclinics of the previous decade, his latest idea is that all GPs should be offered the opportunity to become salaried to the NHS.

In a report for the Institute for Public Policy Research, he concludes that the independent contractor status has ‘put more pressure on GPs – to run a business as well as provide medical care – with levels of stress and dissatisfaction in the UK disproportionately high compared to other countries’.

The report then states: ‘More and more GPs do not want to become partners because of the levels of responsibility and financial risk involved in it as well as the geographical immobility it requires. Evidence suggests that many GPs would be open to moving to a salaried model.’

I don’t know whether Pulse should be flattered that the report’s evidence for this is one of our surveys from 2016.

But this is where his ideas fall down. The reason that our GP partner readers said they would take a salaried post if offered the right deal is not because of the ‘responsibility and risk involved’ inherent in partnerships – they went into partnerships, after all.

It’s because of the isolation they feel as GP numbers dwindle, which itself is a result of years of real-terms funding decreases, increased workload and increased regulation. Fix these and the majority would be delighted to remain as partners.

There is a real debate to be had over whether younger GPs will want to become partners in the future and how a future partnership model will look.

But, for current partners, it is not the model itself that is broken – it is the lack of resources. If he really wants to fix general practice, he should be lobbying for the profession to receive its fair share of the £20bn apparently stumped up by the Prime Minister.

Jaimie Kaffash is editor of Pulse

Readers' comments (15)

  • I don't think silver surfer has a grasp of what is happening on the ground. Young GPs would love Partnerships - if they paid well and minimised risk. The model was sound for decades and still is - the current implementation is the problem.

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  • Advisers to the Darzi review

    Lord David Prior (Deputy Chair of the Lord Darzi Review) – Chair, UCLH & former Parliamentary Under Secretary of State, Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy
    • Sir John Bell – Regius Professor of Medicine, University of Oxford & former President, Academy of Medical Sciences
    • Dame Ruth Carnall – Managing Partner, Carnall Farrar & former Director, NHS London
    • Dr Clare Gerada – Managing Partner, the Hurley Group & former President, Royal College of GPs
    • Norman Lamb – MP for North Norfolk & Chair, Science and Technology Select Committee
    • Mark Lloyd – Chief Executive, Local Government Association
    • Joanne Roney – Chief Executive, Manchester City Council
    • Professor Geraldine Strathdee – Consultant Psychiatrist, Oxleas NHS Trust & former National Clinical Director for Mental Health
    • Dr Paul Williams - MP for Stockton South and practising GP

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  • @Silver surfer...give over and stop spewing gibberish!

    Was talking to a seasoned apms bid writer-has worked with all the big fish- told me about the elephant in the room...goodwill..the system only works because of the additional ‘free work’ that partners do. Turn us into a salaried workforce and the system collapses.

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  • @Silver surfer
    You are Lord Darzi and I claim my £5.

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  • I would love to be a partner if I could earn good money without doing long hours and being stressed. take all the beaurocrasy out all the chasing payments LES DEs rubbish and pay per consult at good rate but prob is even if all that happened as in 2004 I wouldn't want to risk a buy in as could all just change again and i'm earning £800 a day as a locum plus pension.
    One thing I don't want to be is a salaried gimp. well again if the msalery was pushing 200k and workload manageable I might give up my independance

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