Exclusive The BMA’s GP Committee is to debate stopping meetings with NHS England amid the fallout around face-to-face appointments in practices, Pulse has learned.
The emergency motion will be debated at a GPC England meeting scheduled for today.
And grassroots GPs are calling for the resignation of NHS England’s medical director for primary care amid the furore created by its letter – with a petition to that effect racking up almost a thousand signatures so far.
A motion to be debated at the GPC meeting, seen by Pulse, said the GPC has ‘no confidence’ in NHS England’s executive directors.
Proposed by Cambridgeshire LMC chief executive and GPC contract and regulations deputy policy lead Dr Katie Bramall-Stainer, it calls on the GPC’s executive team to ‘immediately cease all formal meetings with NHS England’.
No further meetings should take place until a GPC vote confirms that ‘sufficient steps have been taken to restore the committee’s confidence’ in NHS England’s leaders, it added.
The motion said: ‘[The GPC] has no confidence in the executive directors of NHS England.
‘[It] calls for GPC England’s executive to immediately cease all formal meetings with NHS England until a motion is brought back to GPC England by the executive, requesting a vote on their recommendation that sufficient steps have been taken to restore the committee’s confidence in the executive directors of NHS England, to justify the resumption of such meetings.’
GPC England is ‘outraged’ by NHS England’s ‘lack of understanding of the pressures facing general practice’, it added.
The motion, seconded by GPC contract and regulations policy lead and Surrey and Sussex LMCs chief executive Dr Julius Parker, also called for ‘formal BMA action by escalating concerns about NHS England’s apparent lack of knowledge of the applicable contracts and regulations relating to the delivery of general practice services’.
The Government must provide both ‘senior explanation and public action’ around NHS England’s ‘unacceptable decision’ to publish its letter, the motion added.
It also urges the chair of the BMA’s UK council to support the GPC’s demands for an ‘urgent meeting’ with health secretary Matt Hancock to ‘discuss the spiralling crisis in general practice’.
A BMA spokesperson declined to comment on the upcoming GPC meeting agenda.
They told Pulse: ‘Agendas for BMA committee meetings are for good reason confidential and therefore we cannot comment about what may or may not be discussed ahead of meetings taking place.’
Meanwhile, the RCGP has issued an updated response to NHS England’s letter requiring practices to offer face-to-face appointments to all who want them, amid criticism from GPs.