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Sessional GPC committee becomes ‘fully autonomous’

By Gareth Iacobucci

The GPC’s newly enlarged sessional GP sub-committee became fully autonomous last week, with candidates for election looking to use the platform to push for greater contractual rights.

The list of 46 nominees for the sub-committee – granted a greater say over its own concerns by the GPC – includes a mixture of salaried GPs and locums, young and experienced GPs, and male and female candidates.

Dr Suraj Sharma, a salaried GP in Liverpool who is standing, said he wanted to give sessional GPs a stronger voice on contracts, salaries and working conditions, and ensure they were involved in development of GP commissioning.

He said: ‘At the moment, sessional and salaried GPs are not fairly treated on terms and conditions. The model contract is just not being implemented.’

The election is part of a package of reforms aimed at curbing growing dissatisfaction among salaried GPs and locums GPs, following a BMA survey highlighting a need for stronger representation at LMC and national level. The committee’s size will double to 16 members, four of whom will have permanent places on the GPC.

Ballot papers have now been sent out to all salaried and locum GPs regardless of whether they are BMA members.

GPC chair Dr Laurence Buckman said: ‘We have made changes to our standing orders. As far as we’re concerned they are an autonomous body within the GPC.’

Dr Suraj Sharma