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Doctors warn that NHS could “reach breaking point within the next few years”

BMJ 2010; 341 doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.c7166 (Published 10 December 2010) Cite this as: BMJ 2010;341:c7166
  1. Helen Mooney
  1. 1London

The NHS could reach “breaking point within the next few years” because of a mixture of factors undermining the ability of doctors to give patients consistently high quality care, the Federation of the Royal Colleges of Physicians has warned.

Findings from the federation’s latest census of consultant physicians and medical registrars in the United Kingdom highlight the strain the NHS is already under in specialties caring for very sick patients.

The federation warns that an explosive combination of a rise in numbers of patients, a fall in training posts for would-be consultants, and the need to adhere to the European Working Time Directive has the potential to …

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