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GPs share stories of patient violence amid calls for tougher sanctions against perpetrators

BMJ 2024; 385 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.q1159 (Published 24 May 2024) Cite this as: BMJ 2024;385:q1159
  1. Abi Rimmer
  1. The BMJ

GP leaders have called for tougher sanctions for patients who perpetrate violence against doctors and their teams and more support for surgeries to recognise the surge in incidents occurring in general practice.

Representatives at the annual conference of local medical committees in Newport, Wales, on 23 May heard firsthand accounts from GPs who have been on the receiving end of violence from patients. The meeting passed a motion demanding that the criteria for inclusion in violent patient schemes be relaxed. It also called on all UK governments to ensure that the funding for violent patient schemes was increased, and for the BMA’s UK general practice committee to lobby governments for more severe sanctions for perpetrators.

In 2022 a BMJ investigation found that the number of violent incidents at UK general practices recorded by police forces has almost doubled over the previous five years.1 …

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