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Grim future for GPs under Labour

Dr Lynda Scott
National Health Spokeswoman
24 February 2004

Grim future for GPs under Labour

A startling survey of doctors in general practice raises serious questions over the future of GPs in New Zealand, says National's Health spokeswoman Dr Lynda Scott.

Only 27% of GPs surveyed by the Royal New Zealand College of General Practitioners say they will still be practising in five years time, with most saying they want to retire, go overseas, or leave general practice.

"This confirms what GPs have been telling the Government for a long time. They are fed up with excessive workloads, low pay, government interference and excessive red-tape.

"A local GP may soon be an endangered species, as new graduates are choosing not to enter the GP workforce. Already 50% of the workforce is made up of overseas graduates.

"Primary Health Organisations have only made matters worse, not better. And there is resentment over race based funding which creates unfairness and inconsistencies.

"If this Government doesn't radically change its approach, it won't just be rural areas that won't be able to access a GP," says Dr Scott.

Ends

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