Medicopolitical Digest

GPs' leaders have “constructive” talks on primary care billTaking forward the new deal on junior doctors' hoursGovernment launches £32m nursing campaignTrusts consulted on new NHS organisationTaxpayers will not pay for doctors' remedial training

BMJ 1997; 314 doi: (Published 08 February 1997) Cite this as: BMJ 1997;314:448

GPs' leaders have “constructive” talks on primary care bill

The chairman of the General Medical Services Committee and the chairman of the BMA council met the health secretary last week to tell him of the association's concerns at the plans to allow commercial organisations to employ NHS GPs. Dr Ian Bogle, the GMSC's chairman, hopes that the government will agree to amend the NHS (Primary Care) Bill, which is now going through parliament. At present the bill allows providers of piloted services to apply for “health service body” status. Commercial providers, working with trusts or employing GPs, would be recognised as “health service bodies” for the delivery of family doctor services.

Before the meeting Dr Bogle said that the proposal was a significant step towards deregulation of general practice. “This is the commercialisation of the family doctor service and it will undoubtedly make privatisation of the service that much easier.” After the meeting he said that Stephen Dorrell had “listened and understood our concerns and we are encouraged by his positive response.” Dr Bogle said that there would be further correspondence and meetings and “the signs were good.”

Taking forward the new deal on junior doctors' hours

The NHS Executive has confirmed that regional task forces, which were set up to monitor …

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