GPs call for separate out of hours contract

BMJ 1995; 311 doi: (Published 01 July 1995) Cite this as: BMJ 1995;311:7

Britain's general practitioners have called for a separate contract for out of hours care, which for many doctors could signal the end of 24 hour responsibility. The decision, taken at last week's conference of representatives of local medical committees, stems from the frustration felt by many doctors at the increased burden of night calls. The meeting also endorsed a ballot on industrial action if the government does not move nearer to the profession's proposals for solving the problem. The secretary of state for health has now been asked to intervene.

Speakers at the conference unanimously opposed the government's approach in concentrating on fees for night visits and avoiding the main issue of a properly structured out of hours service. The meeting called for the out of hours component of pay to be separately identified and for improved funding for the out of hours commitment.

There have been three offers from the government, and last month doctors threw out the third one by five votes to one (17 June, p …

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