Dr Krishna Kasaraneni has been vocal about gnerel practice recruitment problems for years now, so it is apt that he is the workforce lead for the BMA’s GP Committee.
His warnings to NHS England and the Government over the years , notably about the folly of their target to recruit 5,000 extra GPs by 2020, were vindicated this year, when former health secretary Jeremy Hunt effectively threw in the towel – admitting that they are ‘struggling’ to recruit. Nothing underlines this more starkly than the fact that there are 1,000 fewer GPs than when the target was set.
Dr Kasaraneni has been involved in some of the Government’s more successful schemes, however. He successfully negotiated the new retention scheme – which benefits both GPs who want to stay in practice and the practices themselves – and he is setting his sights on improving retention at an earlier age.
But there are other issues in his in-tray. He says most significant achievement this past year was getting GP partnership and premises issues on the national agenda, and they remain his ‘main priorities’ for the next 12 months.
The GP partnership review was first announced in February and is now in full swing, chaired by fellow GPC team member Dr Nigel Watson. The premises review is also under way, with its terms of reference agreed between the BMA and NHS England.
Indeed, after the Government revealed that practices owe £202m in premises fees, Dr Kasaraneni doubled down on calls for NHS Property Services and Community Health Partnerships to ‘abandon’ the extra charges and wrote to LMCs to reassure GPs that the GPC would stand with them if they were forced into paying.
Meanwhile, he is still hot on the case for a better primary care support service.
But none of this makes the top of Dr Kasaraneni’s list of favourite moments for the year – that spot goes to Harry Kane’s last-minute winner against Tunisia at the World Cup.
His remit at the BMA continues to expand and now includes practice finance, premises, education, training and workforce.
What others say:
‘A great spokesperson for general practice locally and nationally. He always deals with the difficult issues well. Well done that man!’
He admits to finding premises cost direction fun