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New GP out-of-hours provider appeals for doctors to sign up for shifts

The GP out-of-hours group that is taking over the service from Serco in Cornwall is appealing to more GPs to sign up for out of hours shifts to ensure they can fill their rota.

The service will be operated by the local GP provider company, Cornwall Health, put together by the LMC, and will take over the service in June after Serco’s provision was criticised.

But the LMC is warning they will need more than 100 GPs to be confident of having adequate cover, and Cornwall Health has asked all GPs to consider shifts.

New sessional staff will be paid an hourly rate of £60 for weekdays, £75 for overnight cover, £80 on weekends, £100 on bank holidays and £140 on Christmas.

A bulletin by Cornwall Health states: ‘Already, nearly 50 GPs and one nurse have asked to join the service, which is fantastic. However, we need at least double that number to be confident of filling the rota.

‘If you join us there is no lower limit to the amount of work you need to do. If all the GPs in Cornwall signed up and did just one shift a month we would have more than enough cover.’

Cornwall and Isles of Scilly LMC, in their own appeal to GPs to sign up, wrote: ‘It is important that we support our company in its work. It is the first part of a longer term plan to transform healthcare in the county and secure your practices and jobs for the future as well as improving the way in which we deliver care to our patients.’