40% of GPs in South West England have stated they would quit in the next five years, GP leaders have warned. It has also been found that 70% of GPs in the region intend to reduce their patient contact time.
In the findings, it was found that low morale was a common factor in more than half of the GPs surveyed, with that particular group stating they would leave the profession. These findings highlight the GP shortage that the country is currently facing.
GP leaders have said that there needs to be an end to “sticking plaster solutions” and an action plan from the Government in order to tackle the forthcoming potential crisis within the sector.
The findings clearly state that there are issues facing the sector, and these issues stem from a range of factors, including staff shortages, rising demand and budgets becoming stagnant. Full time GPs in the country are becoming harder to find as more and more are either leaving the profession completely or retiring earlier.
Brexit could make the problem worse, if Britain don’t leave the EU with a good deal for GPs, it could result in more overseas doctors leaving the NHS, putting more strain on a system that is already struggling.
However, the Government has hit back and stated that this research was undertaken before the Government’s plan to improve conditions in general practice – by investing £2.4bn into primary care, extra payments to GPs and cutting red tape whilst also increasing flexible working.
It has also been stated by the Government that they are training a record amount of GPs since records began.
Scott Sanderson, Healthcare specialist at Hawsons, had this to say: “It is clear from the findings that GPs are under strain and much more needs to be done to help ease the pressure on our general practices in England. The statement from the Government regarding extra funding is welcome and will help, but I do feel it is just papering over the cracks – more certainly needs to be done.”