Scottish Parliament TVTBh Pàrlamaid na h-Alba

skip to content

Debate: Addressing Scotland’s GP Recruitment and Retention Challenges

Today's Schedule

  • There are no public meetings scheduled at present

Scheduled times are subject to change

Debate: Addressing Scotland’s GP Recruitment and Retention Challenges

April 24, 2019 15:40


That the Parliament recognises that Scotland is facing considerable challenges in recruiting and retaining GPs, with almost a quarter of GP practices reporting vacancies, leading to temporary and permanent surgery closures; notes that the number of whole time equivalent (WTE) GPs has been declining, from 3,735 in 2013 to 3,575 in 2017; agrees that WTE is a more appropriate measure than headcount in fully appreciating the recruitment and retention challenge; is concerned by warnings from the Royal College of General Practitioners (RCGP) that there will be a predicted shortfall of 856 WTE GPs in Scotland by 2021 at the same time as demand on Scotland’s healthcare system is growing; agrees that health and social care integration cannot be delivered without adequate resources and capacity in community services; welcomes Scottish Government action to improve recruitment and retention of GPs but agrees that more urgent progress is required; notes that general practice carries out the majority of patient contact in Scotland yet has received a declining share of the total NHS Scotland budget since 2005-06; notes RCGP’s call, supported by the BMA, for general practice to receive 11% of the total health budget, and calls on the Scottish Government, given the importance of general practice to tackling health inequalities and improving the health of people in Scotland, to undertake an urgent review of GP recruitment, resources and funding.