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Home Industry News Report: Over half of GP surgeries now open longer

Report: Over half of GP surgeries now open longer

15th October 2008

More than 50 per cent of GP surgeries are now open for longer, offering patients extended opening hours, according to the Department of Health.

Figures published by the department indicate that in less than six months, there has been a 40 per cent rise in the number of practices offering more flexible evening, weekend and early morning opening.

The scheme for extended hours follows alterations to the GP contract agreed with the British Medical Association earlier this year, where the local NHS collaborated with family doctors in areas around the country to agree arrangements for extra weekend and/or evening opening.

“GPs have met the challenging government extended opening hours target by the end of this year, three months early. As at the end of September, over 51 per cent of the 8,275 GP practices in England are offering extended opening hours,” the department said.

The government is investing an additional 250 million pounds in primary care, including setting up more than 100 new practices in regions of the country where there are fewer GPs and greater health challenges.

In recent days, the department announced that chief medical officer Sir Liam Donaldson had confirmed the formation of a revalidation team for England.

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