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Increase GP trainees by 450 a year to avoid crisis, says taskforce

BMJ 2014; 349 doi: (Published 23 July 2014) Cite this as: BMJ 2014;349:g4799
  1. Matthew Limb
  1. 1London

The general practice workforce in England is shrinking, while people’s healthcare needs continue to grow—a situation that “must be addressed immediately” to avoid a crisis, a task force has concluded.

It would take only a small shift of patients away from primary to secondary care because of limited access to GPs to “put the whole healthcare system under unmanageable pressure,” it said.

The GP Taskforce was commissioned by the government to recommend how numbers of GPs could be increased, with a target set for 3250 trainees to enter GP training in England each year by 2015. Recruitment to GP training has stayed below target for the past four years at about 2700 trainees a year.

The report also found “disturbing” evidence that the GP workforce was shrinking. The number of GPs per 100 000 people across England fell from 62 …

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