Dear Mrs May

I wrote last week to Mr Hunt and sat by the phone all weekend, but it appears ministers are not offering a proper out of hours response so I have little choice but to go direct to Emergency PMQs. Your headlines:  “a large number of surgeries are not providing proper out of hours care – […]

GP Dr Philip Lusty witnesses a miracle in Portadown

Dr Philip Lusty writes: “I’ve just witnessed a miracle and it happened in Portadown… Portadown, a large town in Northern Ireland has had significant negative publicity lately with the threatened closure of a neighbour general practice  leaving this month 5000 patients without a GP and potential list dispersal.   The stress and strain this has […]

Dear Mr Hunt

You told parliament yesterday that it was time for “an honest conversation with the public about their use of A&E“.  Are you up for one too, as Secretary of State? Unfortunately there is no evidence of honest conversations, cajoling, beating or any other persuasive endeavour having the slightest effect on patient behaviour in seeking healthcare. […]

NHS crisis and cognitive dissonance

So the Red Cross tells us there’s a humanitarian crisis in our NHS hospitals and ambulance services.  What reactions does that trigger in your mind? This is the same Red Cross which is helping those left alive flee the ruins of Aleppo, and in context I don’t know about you but I have a problem […]

Why I’m looking forward to 2017

Yesterday in deep frost the view from Great Mell Fell in Cumbria was blissful.  I hope your holiday had similar moments, and they will continue to inspire as we get to work in 2017. I’m optimistic about the year ahead as more and more GPs and their patients are seeing the benefits of a demand […]

Taking back control of your day

Dr Tom Black writes in GP Frontline December 2016 for RCGP Bright Ideas – pdf  here Find a summary article on the RCGP website.  

Christmas Peace Dividend

Method:  Telephone GP practice between 11am and midday today 23/12/16 and ask receptionist how busy they are, compared with an average Friday. Sample:  10 practices throughout UK, 6 England, 2 NI, 1 Scotland, 1 Wales, mix of urban/rural/socio-economic populations.  All operate a demand led system, GP telephone response, no pre-booked face to face appts. Results:  […]

They don’t want you to read this

3:30 on Tuesday a practice manager tells me, “I’ve got GPs wandering around, wondering what to do.  We’ve run out of patients”.  Me:  “Get them cleaning windows.”  It was day 2 of launch. Last week a receptionist at a practice 3 months in told me “it’s really quiet today” – we often hear the same, […]

E-consultations – evidence and fear

You can’t have failed to notice that everyone’s talking about e-consultations and whatever the evidence (or lack of it), the GP Forward View fund is forcing the pace. Evidence.  It’s the key battleground because if £45m is going to be spent the public needs to be assured that it’s value for money (more particularly, the […]

webGP eConsult GP Forward View pricing

webGP eConsult GPFV page suggests a rush to sign up to a plan by 23 December. Further details are given in their eConsult brochure GPFV, and if you’re short of time, the eConsult_Leaflet. Claiming 300 practices using the product, it is notable to see the extensive quotes from their 2013 pilot study of 20 practices, 14 […]