Headlines: February 21st, 2001

The process of modernisation is forcing a crisis of morale among Scottish General Practitioners, according to a new survey by the BMA.The committee representing Scottish GPS has produced a survey which shows GPs suffering high levels of stress and considering abandoning their profession.

The survey, The Reality Behind the Rhetoric, cites the causes as increased GP workload, increased bureaucracy, and a lack of resources to meet increased expectations.

Four out of five GPs think their stress levels have increased over the last five years. Only one in four would recommend a career in general practice to a sixteen-year-old considering it.

The BMA in Scotland is proposing the following recovery plan – a reverse in the decline of primary care, GPs to spend more time with patients and less on paperwork, and extra funding for practice staff, such as nurses and administrators.

The BMA says that the Scottish Executive has ignored the plight of the GP and the state of primary care in its plans for the revitalisation of the Scottish NHS and health generally in Scotland, announced in December.

Our National Health –A Plan for Action, a Plan for Change, outlines proposals for major investment, but concentrated on hospitals and waiting lists, says the BMA.

Our National Health is published on the Scottish Executive website at  www.scotland.gov.uk/library3/health/onh-00.asp

BMA link: http://web.bma.org.uk/scotland