Category: Opinion

Why I am still fighting for general practice

General practice can sometimes feel like a battleground… it certainly has a fight on its hands but it is a fight that is worth fighting.     Peter Aird is a GP in Bridgwater, Somerset. GP practices are closing at an alarming rate with more and more GPs abandoning the profession as workload rises exponentially and recruitment continues to struggle to keep up with the number of doctor leaving. Reflecting on the assertion, given some support at the 2017 RCGP conference by the chair Dr Helen Stokes-Lampard, that the causes of ill health are largely social, Dr Phil Hammond...

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Babylon and smartphone consultations – dream or nightmare?

Martin Roland is an Emeritus Professor of Health Services Research at the University of Cambridge. Professor Roland was a practising GP for 35 years. So NHS patients are going to be able to deregister with their practice and reregister with a practice offering instant smartphone consultations. Apparently 80% of problems can be dealt with by phone, but surgery consultations will be offered for those who need to be seen. In an interview with The Times, Ali Parsa, founder of Babylon – the firm providing the service – is quoted as saying “I think this is the beginning of the...

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Jerry cross the Mersey: Hunt at the RCGP Conference

Jacket off, shirtsleeved, roving the stage, Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt must have said “The truth is…” three times in the first three minutes of his RCGP Conference speech in Liverpool this Thursday. By the standards of recent Tory party speeches this one was pretty good. He thanked GPs for doing a good job and reiterated the mantra “If general practice fails, the NHS fails”.

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Sick leave in general practice

On my journey to being a grown-up GP, I completed placements in four different practices as a junior doctor (FY2, ST1, ST3 and ST4). As you might imagine, each placement introduced me to a host of intriguing colleagues – both clinical and non-clinical – who each taught me something different and between them, showed me what good (and bad) healthcare teams look like. Above all, over the course of these placements, I became convinced that the ‘independent contractor’ model of general practice needs to change. One important reason for this was the way in which practices struggled to cope...

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Part 1: Challenging the norm and GPs as innovators

Cat Roberts is Clinical Lead GP involved in developing and delivering primary care services within an acute trust, including a GP-led frailty service Following a few years of basking in the ‘delicious ambiguity’ of general practice we returned to the hospital wards to try to fully understand patient care pathways. Any doctor studying for membership exams will describe how the second learning cycle is so much more meaningful when digested with a wealth of clinical experience – the same is true of returning to secondary care having worked in primary care. We were stepping from a land of hypothesis into...

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The British Journal of General Practice and BJGP Open are bringing research to clinical practice. This is where we add the debate and opinion to help ensure everyone benefits from that research.

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