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Britain is worse off for GP cover than Malta, Romania and Estonia, figures reveal

Britain is worse off for GP cover than Malta, Romania and Estonia with just 76 family doctors per 100,000 people, figures reveal – THREE times fewer than top-ranking Portugal

  • Figures show that Portugal has more than three times as many GPs than the UK
  • Britain is ranked 16th out of 21 countries for the number of family doctors
  • Four in ten GPs are quitting the NHS within five years of finishing their training
  • More than 1,000 GPs have left the NHS since 2015 and many are going abroad

The UK has fewer GPs per person than Romania, Malta and Estonia.

In official statistics, Britain was ranked 16th out of 21 countries for family doctors with just 76 per 100,000 inhabitants.

Only Spain, Latvia, Slovenia, Bulgaria and Greece fared worse with 75, 72, 68, 64, and 42 GPs respectively. 

Every day, almost one million people see a GP in England, with more than one in ten patients waiting 21 days or more for an appointment [File photo]

Based on the EU’s 2016 figures, Portugal had more than three times as many GPs than the UK – topping the list with its 253 general practitioners per 100,000

Based on the EU’s 2016 figures, Portugal had more than three times as many GPs than the UK – topping the list with its 253 general practitioners per 100,000

Based on the EU’s 2016 figures, Portugal had more than three times as many GPs than the UK – topping the list with its 253 general practitioners per 100,000.

While international healthcare systems vary widely, experts suggested this is further evidence that primary care in Britain is walking into a crisis.

John Kell, of the Patients Association, said Britain always had fewer GPs than other nations but managed to cope better. 

But he added: ‘We now seem to have reached the point where relatively low numbers of GPs per head are not an efficiency, but a looming crisis.’

He said the NHS’s new £20.5billion strategy, announced this month, must ensure the service has the professionals it needs.

More than 1,000 GPs have left the NHS since 2015, blaming unmanageable workloads and increased demands from an ageing population. 

Many are choosing to go abroad with health bosses admitting that four in ten GPs are quitting the NHS within five years of finishing their training.

The number of GPs applying for certificates to work abroad has almost doubled since 2008, with the promise of higher salaries and 40-hour working weeks elsewhere. 

Based on the EU’s 2016 figures, Portugal had more than three times as many GPs than the UK – topping the list with its 253 general practitioners per 100,000 [File photo]

Many have blamed this for worsening the UK’s GP recruitment crisis, alongside those retiring early to avoid hefty taxes when their pension pot exceeds £1million.

Every day, almost one million people see a GP in England, with more than one in ten patients waiting 21 days or more for an appointment.

Professor Helen Stokes-Lampard, chairman of the Royal College of GPs, said: ‘We desperately need more GPs right across the UK.’

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk


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