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23 December 2013

Stevenson Welcomes New Arrangements for GPs

Local MSP Stewart Stevenson has welcomed new contract arrangements for GPs which will mean more time available to spend with patients after changes to were given the green light. The changes, agreed with BMA Scotland, aims to reduce bureaucracy and give doctors more time to focus on the needs of their patients.

Under the contract there will be a review of patient access to GP services across the country. The results will help Health Boards make any necessary improvements.

Commenting, Mr Stevenson said:

“The Scottish Government has worked with BMA Scotland in making these changes which will now see a new focus on quality and safety and have GPs more involved in the integration of health and social care as well as the existing anticipatory care plans and patient safety.

“Our local GPs are valued and respected members of our community and, while things have changed greatly from the days when my father was a country GP, being able to see the doctor in person and without too long a wait is still of great importance to patients. I hope that the renewed focus on cutting down admin work and bureaucracy will help achieve that.”

Health Secretary Alex Neil said:

“I am delighted that we have been able to agree this contract in partnership with GPs. It is only by listening to them that we can understand the pressures they feel and crucially how they can best meet the needs of patients.

“There are over 16.2 million GP consultations every year in Scotland, with patients having contact with their GP an average of 4.4 times in a year. We have a great opportunity at this time to make things better, and I believe this contract will benefit patients across Scotland.

“We recognise that GPs are at the heart of our vision for health care in Scotland, ensuring people are provided with quality care in their homes and communities and helping them live longer and healthier lives.

“This is further evidence of our move towards a more Scottish GP contract, reflecting the needs of patients in Scotland. I am pleased that we have been able to agree this direction of travel with GPs and look to build further on this specifically Scottish approach in the future.”

Currently the vast majority of the GP contract in Scotland is negotiated on a Scottish basis. This has allowed key elements of the contract to be tailored to respond to the public health needs of the Scottish population. The contract is worth over £500 million.

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