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Doctors withdraw from Primary Care Teams in major escalation of dispute

GPs voted unanimously to pull out from Primary Care Teams over the latest cuts imposed by the Government.

File photo
File photo
Image: Andrew Matthews/PA Wire

DOCTORS ARE TO withdraw their services from Government-run Primary Care Teams in a major escalation of the dispute between GPs and the Government.

The GP committee of the Irish Medical Organisation made the decision at an emergency session convened to discuss how to deal with cuts to doctor services.

Doctors have said that Government plans to cut fees and allowances paid to GPs will badly affect doctors and have a knock-on effect on patients.

Primary Care Teams are groups of doctors, nurses, physiotherapists, home helps and occupational therapists which are housed in one building and provide one-stop-shop health services to a local population.

“Our members are committed to doing all they can on behalf of their patients but faced with these continuous cuts, GPs will now have to focus on working to their contracts and having other services referred for attention to their nearest hospital,” said Dr Ray Walley of the IMO.

The GP Committee voted unanimously to take action in response to the latest round of cuts. In a statement, the group said that they believed the latest cuts mark the abandonment by the Government of “any ambition to proceed with ‘free’ GP care a part of a centrally funded system of universal health care.”

“This is not good for patients or the health services,” said Dr Walley. “This latest move by Government further undermines general practice and will ultimately lead to higher costs.”

Read: Doctors warn patients: Expect long waiting times to see your GP >

Column: A campaign of misinformation has turned the public against doctors >

Read: IMO tells members to vote Yes on Haddington Road deal – reluctantly >

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