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'Banffshire GP Practices Need Innovative Solutions' - Glen Reynolds, SNP Candidate

>> 7 April 2017

SNP candidate for Banff & District at the local elections in May, Glen Reynolds, is backing action to address hard-to-fill GP posts in the area and has called for “innovative” solutions to be found.

GP practices across the North of Scotland have struggled to fill vacancies due to a significant increase in the numbers of GPs working part-time and an increase in the number of medical students choosing to work in hospitals rather than in local communities.

Commenting, Glen Reynolds said:

“There’s no single solution to attracting GPs to rural areas, but I’m keen that a combination of measures is used to fill vacancies. Increased numbers of traineeships and financial incentives will help, but the local authority could also help by learning from initiatives in other rural areas in terms of filling public sector posts. The council needs to work with the NHS and the community to help find sustainable solutions.

“While Scottish Government investment to recruit more junior doctors into GP training posts is very welcome, I’m keen all avenues are explored. One method, which seems to be working in other areas is for “salaried practices” where the GPs are employed by NHS Grampian, to become “independent practices” where the GPs contract to provide the service. This gives them a financial incentive in making the practice a success. If the practice in Portsoy and Aberchirder were to go down this route it may help make it more attractive to new GPs.

“I understand this is being looked at and I very much welcome this development. In the meantime, I am aware that staff at the practice in Portsoy and Aberchirder are very grateful for the understanding of patients at this time.”

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