Intended for healthcare professionals


Where GPs go, politicians will follow

BMJ 2006; 332 doi: (Published 02 February 2006) Cite this as: BMJ 2006;332:258
  1. Zosia Kmietowicz
  1. London

    The UK government's green paper on welfare reform supports putting employment advisers in GP practices to help people come off incapacity benefit. Zosia Kmietowicz looks at a practice which has had such an adviser for more than four years

    It will come as no surprise to most doctors that a key proposal in the UK government's green paper on welfare reform, announced last month, started life in general practice some years ago. Doctors have long known that unemployment can undermine general as well as mental health and that as it continues problems tend to accrue and prospects dwindle. But most have had little to offer their patients other than the address of the local job centre. That is until four years ago when a group of GPs in north London saw an opportunity to do things differently. And now John Hutton, the work and pensions secretary, is following suit.he advisers are more akin to life counsellors“

    Embedded Image

    Dr Roy Macgregor: “The sessions are not just about job advice. The advisers are more akin to life counsellors”

    Credit: MARK THOMAS

    Roy Macgregor and his partners at the James Wigg Practice in Kentish Town, north London, were already offering their patients a chance to see an adviser from the Citizen's Advice Bureau when they hit on the idea of establishing …

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