GP partnership model is “no longer fit for purpose,” says Lords inquiry

BMJ 2017; 357 doi: (Published 05 April 2017) Cite this as: BMJ 2017;357:j1713
  1. Gareth Iacobucci
  1. The BMJ

The traditional partnership model of general practice is “no longer fit for purpose” and should be phased out in favour of alternative models such as salaried employment, concludes a major parliamentary inquiry.

The report from the House of Lords select committee on the long term sustainability of the NHS concluded that the small business model of general practice was “inhibiting change” and frustrating efforts to deliver more care outside hospitals in response to increasing demand from patients and NHS staff shortages.1

The inquiry, published on Wednesday 5 April, found broad support for general practices working together in federations to deliver an extended range of services. But it said that NHS England and the Department of Health must help GPs do this and work with the profession’s leaders to look at alternative contractual models, including “direct employment, which would reflect arrangements elsewhere in the NHS.”

In parallel, the committee urged the NHS to tackle its “over-reliance” on the acute care hospital sector, which posed “a serious threat to the long-term …

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