By Nigel Praities
GP leaders have hit out at the Government decision to hand GPs an effective pay cut, warning it will force practices to take ‘tough decisions’ about cutting staff and services.
Opening the Scottish LMCs conference in Glasgow Dr Dean Marshall, chair of GPC Scotland, said the award of increase of a 1.34% in contractual payments for GPs – with an attached 1% efficiency saving in GP expenses – was effectively a pay cut and was unfair despite the harsh financial climate.
‘Like you I am very disappointed and angry that the Government has decided to overrule the recommendations of the review body,’ he said.
‘We’re well aware of the financial climate we’re in but the DDRB took this into account when making its recommendations.’
Dr Marshall also urged the Scottish Government to include GPs in discussions over where to make efficiency savings.
‘In this time of financial constraints I say to the Scottish Government: We are here to help you deliver the services that the public need.’
‘We are the experts in delivering those services so listen to us – we will tell you where we can be more efficient, where we can increase productivity, where we can improve quality, but you must also listen when we tell you things that can’t be delivered, when we tell you what we shouldn’t be trying to deliver and when we tell you the costs of what you want to deliver.
‘General practice is your biggest asset – value it, protect it, nurture it, look to us for the answers, not as an excuse for the problems,’ he said.
Check out our live blog from the conference here
Dr Dean Marshall