Views & Reviews From the Frontline

Do we need GPs?

BMJ 2013; 347 doi: (Published 01 November 2013) Cite this as: BMJ 2013;347:f6589
  1. Des Spence, general practitioner, Glasgow
  1. destwo{at}

Everyone is prejudiced; we merely have different prejudices. There are widely held prejudices against general practitioners (GPs). And, like most prejudices, these are unspoken and denied. But the anonymity of online communities means these views come spilling forth. GPs are the failed doctors: the thick, the lazy, and the useless. Forum members have even suggested that all GPs be sacked, with receptionists simply making appointments with hospital specialists. Generalism means less; everyone wants the expert.

So I perennially find myself promoting or defending generalism (depending on your perspective). …

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