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BMA and RCGP join Government working group on GP bureaucracy

The BMA and RCGP have joined a Government working group on ‘renewal and recovery’ in general practice, including regulation and bureaucracy.

The ministerial working group, set up by health minister Jo Churchill, will feed into the bureaucracy review promised in the 2020/21 GP contract, the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) told Pulse.

In a recent BMA GP Committee bulletin, the GPC said chair Dr Richard Vautrey had joined the group on ‘renewal and recovery in general practice’ from the coronavirus pandemic.

It added that the BMA will be submitting evidence to the review and participating in ‘ongoing discussions’ to agree on ‘final recommendations’ for the working group to put to ministers.

A DHSC spokesperson told Pulse that the group has met three times so far during June and July to discuss the recovery phase for general practice – focussing on regulation and bureaucracy, ways of working and general practice’s public and community health role.

Other attendees include the RCGP, NHS England, the CQC, Health Education England, Public Health England, the DHSC and NHS X, they added.

The bureaucracy review is expected to conclude by the end of the year, the DHSC spokesperson said.

Last month, NHS England announced it was beginning the promised review into GP bureaucracy, saying that any tasks that were ‘not a good use of time’ should not be reinstated after the pandemic. 

It followed warnings from both the BMA and the RCGP that the Government must not allow GP bureaucracy to return to pre-pandemic levels.

It comes as NHS England has announced it is working to ‘redesign the current process’ for GP appraisals, with the intention to ‘take a flexible approach’ to their reintroduction in light of the Covid-19 pandemic.

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