With thousands of family GPs planning to retire in the next 5 years, the NHS faces a skills shortage with failure to train enough junior doctors to replace them.
Agreements to limit the recruitment of GPs from other countries which face a similar problem, means that hiring from overseas will not be a viable option.
This indicates that doctors may need to change their practices, as researchers believe that face to face consultations between doctor and patient are no longer sustainable.
Swain & Co.’s medical negligence solicitors are concerned about this warning from a report. Doctors are already making mistakes over prescriptions due to pressure (see earlier article), and this skills shortage could lead to more GP mistakes being made.
To suggest that face to face patient and doctor consultations need to be altered may seem practical in meeting this issue, but patients need to trust in their doctor. It can often take a long time for a patient to seek advice from a doctor, and potentially depersonalising the service from GPs could lead to delays in diagnosis, having a devastating effect on patients’ health.
Services to support the GPs are of course needed to address the issues of prescription errors and the potential issue of medical negligence, but potentially reducing the options for a patient to see their doctor could mean delays in diagnosis and treatment.
If you have suffered due to a medical mistake made by your GP, or your doctor has prescribed the wrong medication causing complications to your health, then you could be entitled to compensation.