- 2 mins read
A provocative article by the Daily Mail’s columnist Sarah Vine in last week’s paper, claiming that it was impossible to see a GP prompted the BMA (British Medical Association) to send an official complaint to the paper, expressing its ‘anger at attacks and smears’ against GPs, following the latest GP-bashing article published by the newspaper.
Vine declared ‘Being a doctor is supposed to be about helping sick people get better, not guilt-tripping them for taking up your time… So why are doctors STILL using Covid as an excuse not to see patients?’. She said obtaining a GP appointment was the equivalent of ‘seeking an audience with the Pope’ and claimed that GPs seem to have unilaterally decided they don’t want to see patients anymore and were still using Covid as an excuse when most businesses had moved on.
This ill-informed biased nonsense is a totally unnecessary attack on the majority of exceptionally hard-working GPs, who are suffering from overwhelming workloads. Since the pandemic patient demands have soared, with many people becoming increasingly concerned about their health and in numerous cases insisting on seeing a doctor (or rushing to overcrowded A&E departments) when their symptoms are clearly not urgent.
With such a desperate shortage of GPs and no solution envisaged in the near future, we have to give our GPs a much needed and deserved break. They have studied intensively for 7 years, passed exams at the highest level and become GPs as a vocation. At MCG Healthcare we’re at the coalface of recruiting in Primary Care and we know the doctors we represent will be outraged and hurt by Vine’s scurrilous attack.
As Dr Matt Mayer says
"This latest smear by the Daily Mail yet again blames the workforce itself for the worst workforce shortage in GP history.
We have fewer GPs than ever before, who are providing more appointments than ever before, in a broken system. If GPs have the easy job the Daily Mail suggests, why are they all leaving?
Blaming GPs for the fact that there aren't enough GPs is as absurd as blaming the banknotes in your wallet for the cost-of-living crisis. Such an argument simply tries to deflect blame and scrutiny away from those whose fault this crisis really is."