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#GPnews: LMC leader calls on GPC to consider boycott of appraisal process

16:25 Dr Dean Eggitt, medical secretary of Doncaster LMC and a GPC member, has raised the possibilty of boycotting the appraisal process.

He wrote on twitter today:

14:30 The CQC will work with Ofsted, the police and the probation service to focus on protecting children from abuse. The four parties will examine how well agencies – including health providers – are working together in a local area to help and protect children.

CQC chief inspector of general practice Professor Steve Field said: ’Early and robust intervention is critical in protecting those exposed to domestic abuse. These targeted inspections build on the strong foundations laid by our joint safeguarding work that is already underway with our partners. This aims to improve outcomes for extremely vulnerable children and young people.

‘We hope that this programme will encourage a greater focus on children’s experiences and the hidden child.’

12:50 More rationing stories comign out today. The BBC reports that United Lincolnshire Hospitals NHS Trust could close its A&E department at night at Grantham and District Hospital due to a severe shortage of doctors.

It said closing the Grantham A&E rather than the departments at Lincoln County Hospital or Pilgrim Hospital in Boston was the ’safest option’ and failing to act ’may put patients at risk’.

Dr Mark Porter, BMA council chair, said: ’This is another example of the crisis emerging in emergency medicine. Doctors always want to deliver the best possible care for our patients, but increasing demand has not been matched with investment.

’Emergency medicine in particular is experiencing a recruitment and retention crisis. This is crippling at a time when we need more of these doctors to keep up with rising demand on services. It also creates a vicious circle, adding to pressures on existing doctors, further increasing the risk of burnout and making these areas of medicine less attractive to doctors in training.

’More broadly, in light of possible closures, we urgently need a long term strategy for the NHS that addresses the fundamental workload and funding challenges that are overwhelming our health service.’

8:15 There is more fallout from the decision of NHS St Helens CCG to ban all non-urgent referrals this winter.

Stephen Cannon, Vice President of the Royal College of Surgeonstold the Telegraph that bans on all but the most urgent treatment would become ’commonplace’ without major changes to the funding of the health service.

The orthopaedic surgeon wrote in a letter to the Telegraph: ’This is not a one-off, this is a growing problem across the NHS. We are deeply concerned. It is bad enough having to put up with crippling arthritis as waiting times get longer, but these sorts of delays can mean the hip crumbling away so the patient can’t even take a step. It also means that when patients do have surgery, it is infinitely more complex.

’I am concerned that we could end up going back to the days when patients waited two or three years for operations’.

He warned that many patients were being left in ’severe discomfort and pain’.