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GP list closure data ‘shocking’, says shadow health secretary

The number of GP practices having to close lists to new patients is ‘shocking’ and linked to ‘relentless underfunding’, the Labour Party has said.

Labour’s shadow health secretary Jonathan Ashworth reacted to Pulse’s survey revealing over a third of practices have either temporarily closed lists, or are considering doing so.

Mr Ashworth said: ‘This shocking survey is damning evidence of a system falling apart at the seams. 

‘The Tories’ relentless underfunding of primary care services has left practitioners struggling to keep services going and it is patients paying the price.’

Pulse’s survey of 500 GPs showed that 9% of respondents ‘have already done it’ and a further 28% said they ‘are considering’ closing their lists.

NHS England approved 145 practices to temporarily close their lists in 2016/17.