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NHS England supports calls for staff grade doctors to be allowed to work in general practice, a subject which I spoke about in the GP magazine Pulse. Secondary care (SAS) doctors would be able to work in GP practices alongside GPs, prescribing and monitoring many patient needs, improving the option for face-to-face care, and could enable GPs to spend more time on complex patients. Practices could also offer permanent positions to these doctors, giving patients continuity of care.
Although figures are out today with the NHS publishing data for the first time, announcing a record 36 million practice level appointments in England last month, there are still thousands of patients every day who are unable to see or speak to a doctor.
Although SAS doctors have not taken the additional training and qualifications required to become a GP, they are still medically trained doctors and I’m sure many patients would be more than happy to have an appointment with a doctor, whether it’s a general practitioner or a qualified doctor. This would greatly reduce GP and patient stress and make a huge difference to patient care and the NHS as a whole.
Urgent decision making and action is required Steve Barclay!