General Practitioners: Standards

Department of Health and Social Care written question – answered on 21st September 2022.

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Photo of Sam Tarry Sam Tarry Labour, Ilford South

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what short and long term steps the Government is taking to increase the availability of GP appointments.

Photo of Will Quince Will Quince Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)

Excluding COVID-19 vaccinations, there were an average of 1.24 million appointments per working day in July 2022, compared to 1.17 million in July 2019. We have also made £520 million available to improve access and expand general practice capacity during the pandemic. To reduce unnecessary bureaucracy for general practitioners (GPs) and increase capacity for appointments, we have expanded the range of healthcare professionals who can sign fit notes and published seven principles to reduce unnecessary burdens on GPs.

We are investing at least £1.5 billion to create an additional 50 million general practice appointments by 2024 through increasing and diversifying the workforce. General practice teams include a range of other health professionals in addition to GPs, to respond to the needs of patients and we are on schedule to recruit an additional 26,000 primary care staff.

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