GPs demand more time to see patients with 15-minute appointments across the Nhs

The Royal College of GPs insists the current 10-minute average is simply not long enough given the number of patients with complex health complaints

Doctors have demanded minimum 15-minute appointments across the NHS.

Patients currently get just nine minutes for consultations with their GP on average.

Professor Helen Stokes-Lampard, of the Royal College of GPs, said a bigger workforce was needed and added: “It is abundantly clear the 10-minute appointment is unfit for purpose.”

GPs have said they must have more time with patients if they are to be able to do their jobs properly.

In the current system, family doctors have less time with patients compared with other larger European nations.

On average, patients get just nine minutes and 12 seconds with their GP.

The Royal College of GPs insists this is not long enough to treat the increasing number of patients who have multiple conditions.

It comes as current trends show GP shortages in England will triple to 7,000 by 2023/24.

GP shortages in England will triple to 7,000 by 2023/24 (Image: Getty)

 

Prof Helen Stokes-Lampard, chair of the RCGP, said: “It is abundantly clear that the standard 10-minute appointment is unfit for purpose.

“It’s increasingly rare for a patient to present with a just single health condition and we cannot deal with this adequately in 10 minutes.”

She added that extra time would require “more resources and an expanded workforce”.

Patients with multiple chronic conditions increased by 8% a year from 2003/4 to 2015/16.

To enable 15-minute appointments, the report said general practice should receive 11% of the NHS budget.

But, it has been cut from 11% in 2005/6 to 9.5% in 2018. The RCGP report also calls for named family doctors.

Dr Richard Vautrey, of the BMA, said: “No GP wants to rush their time with patients, squeezing it into a 10-minute window when it needs far longer.”

An NHS spokesman said increased funding of £4.5billion had seen GPs free up “an extra half a million hours of time for patients”.

District nurses fall by half in 10 years

The NHS has lost half its district nurses in the last decade, new figures show.

In England there are now 4,031, a 47% drop from 7,643 in 2009, according to the Royal College of Nursing report. It blamed Tory cuts to cash for recruitment and training.

Yinglen Butt, of the RCN, said: “Chronic underfunding of this service is an outrageous false economy. District nurses provide a lifeline for patients – many frail and elderly – who often can’t leave their homes.”

She called on ministers to reassess staffing needs “based on patient safety.” The roving nurses treat patients at home, preventing them ending up in hospital or sheltered housing.

The NHS Long Term Plan said they were key to its future.

Source: https://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/gps-demand-more-time-see-16174090

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