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Patients will start dying because we’re too busy trying to keep people healthy

Great news ladies and gents. Diabetes screening, or rather screening for the potential to become diabetic – yes, that’s like screening for evidence of existence – is getting every closer to being a contractual requirement.

That’s good, because it gives us something to do with that spare millisecond we have left between screening for alcohol problems, screening for dementia, screening for cardiovascular risk, screening for hypertension, screening for likelihood of unplanned admission, screening for cervical cancer, screening for depression and anxiety, and screening for people who’ve not been subjected to any form of screening within the last fortnight.

This is not a particularly original thought, but it’s one which bears repetition and, let’s face it, shouting, so here goes: WE ARE REACHING THE POINT WHERE OUR IMPOSED PUBLIC HEALTH ROLE MEANS WE DO NOT HAVE TIME TO SEE THE SICK. And that is why patients are having to wait for weeks to see and us, and why the Government is insisting that we work 36 hours a day, 12 days per week.

Please GPC, Pulse, National Screening Committee, national media, God, anyone, make the politicians see sense. Otherwise patients will start dying because we’re too busy trying to keep people healthy.

Dr Tony Copperfield is a GP in Essex. You can follow him on Twitter @DocCopperfield