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Leinster has longest GP waiting times for patients while Munster has shortest

The average waiting time for a GP has soared from just under 10 hours in 2010 to over 34 hours.

Image: Shutterstock/Andrey_Popov

WAITING TIMES FOR patients to see their GP has more than tripled over the past five years, with Leinster having the longest average waiting time.

That’s according to a survey carried out on behalf of the National Association of General Practitioners (NAGP).

The survey revealed that the current waiting time for a patient seeking a routine appointment with their GP has soared from an average of just under 10 hours in 2010 to over 34 hours (1 day, 10 hours and 25 minutes).

Leinster has the longest average waiting time for a patient waiting to see a GP for a routine appointment (37.8 hours), followed by Connacht (31.8), Ulster (30.2) and Munster (28.5).

The survey also found that the current waiting time for a patient seeking an urgent appointment with their GP has grown from an average of just over 2 hours (2 hours and 8 minutes) to 5 hours and 12 minutes.

Speaking at the launch of the NAPG’s Patient Wait’ campaign, Dr Yvonne Williams Chair of Communications said:

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“These figures show how much pressure general practice is under at the moment and act as a warning sign for the safety of patients.”

 Long waiting times at emergency departments are a well-established phenomenon of the Irish health system but these figures confirm that the issue has spread to general practices.

Two GPs who took part in the survey said that patients would have to wait more than 14 days for a routine appointment. These results were excluded from the overall average.

The Gorilla Survey was carried out among 596  GPs over a 3-day period between October 16th and 18th.

Read: Union wants Beaumont Hospital to go off call as 41 people are on trolleys>

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