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GP access: what are the manifestos promising?


Conservative party logo - online

Conservative party logo – online


Deadline for all patients in England to have access to seven-day routine GP care brought forward to 2019, although does specify that appointments will ‘either their own GP surgery or one nearby’. GPs must provide greater access while ‘ensuring care remains personal’. Practices will use technology to ensure patients can ‘see the right clinician more quickly’.

Labour party logo - online

Labour party logo – online


They will increase GP funding to GP services to ensure ‘patients can access the care they need’. No other pledges on access. 2015’s pledge to ensure GP appointments within 48-hours is completely absent.

Liberal Democrats party logo - online

Liberal Democrats party logo – online

Liberal Democrats

Will expand evening and weekend GP opening and encourage online, phone and Skype appointments. Will support GPs to come together to collectively provide services such as ‘out-of-normal-opening-hours appointments’. They will also encourage GPs to work together in federations.

SNP logo

SNP logo


Set to roll out a scheme for people who are registeredas being multimorbid to automatically recieve a longer appointment with a GP. Currently negotiating a new contract that will see GPs dealing with more complex patients.


Green party logo

Green party logo

Green Party

No specific policies mentioned.




Plaid Cymru logo

Plaid Cymru logo

Plaid Cymru

No specific policies mentioned.



UKIP party logo - online

UKIP party logo – online


Only mention of GP access is as part of ‘reducing A&E traffic’. Manifesto promises ‘improving access to and facilities in GP surgeries, keeping minor injuries units open, and sustaining funding levels for local chemists, we can start to address the A&E crisis’.

Pulse reality check

The Conservatives and Lib Dems have ignored lengthening waiting times for in-hours appointments in their haste to secure evening and weekend access for commuters, and despite the billions extra it will cost. So much for ‘strong and stable’ this could push general practice over the edge. On the plus side, it is good to see Labour ditch the 48-hour target.

This is part of a series of articles where Pulse reality checks all the manifesto promises from the main parties and their significance for GPs. Click here for all our Election 2017 coverage.