This site is intended for health professionals only

Three-quarters of patients concerned about GP pressures

Three-quarters of patients concerned about GP pressures

Almost three-quarters (73%) of patients are concerned about the pressure GP practices are under, a new survey has found.

The proportion of patients who are dissatisfied with continuity of care in general practice has increased, the Health Foundation survey of over 2,000 over-16s also found.

The survey, which was conducted in May and June, found a nine percentage-point increase compared to November last year in patients unhappy they can’t see the same GP or health professional each time – from 19% to 28%.

Another large study recently found that employing healthcare workers other than GPs or nurses leads to a drop in patient satisfaction.

However, the public are now less likely to say that waiting times for appointments are too long than in November 2021 (down from 46% to 40%), but 43% of respondents said that it is too hard to book an appointment, according to the Health Foundation survey.

They put this down to not enough staff (43%), not enough funding (42%) and the pandemic (38%).

Over half (55%) think the responsibility for addressing these pressures lies with the Government, with 11% saying GP practices themselves should be responsible.

New Prime Minister Liz Truss has said ensuring people have access to GP appointments is one of her ‘three early priorities’ in the role.

However new health secretary Therese Coffey indicated a severe lack plans for turning this into reality in her first interview yesterday morning.

NHS England recently announced the ‘rapid recruitment’ of up to 2,000 additional social prescribing link workers, health coaches and care coordinators among measures to alleviate GP pressures this winter.