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Budget cuts "could close 120 GPs surgeries"

Doctors are rolling out a nationwide campaign aimed at fighting budget cuts in the GP sector.

Image: Christopher Edwin Nuzzaco via Shutterstock

GENERAL PRACTITIONERS ACROSS the country are warning that cuts to health budgets drastically “reduce their ability to treat patients”.

The National Association of General Practitioners (NAGP) today launches a nationwide patient awareness campaign entitled General Practice in Crisis, which they will roll out nationally over the next four weeks.

The association says that the campaign is being launched in order to highlight the effect that budget cuts are having on GPs. They say that there will be “longer waiting lists, no home visits and changes in fee structures”.

A statement from the NAGP hits out at what they call the “systematic dismantling of general practice”, asking GPs to sign a petition and make contact with their local representatives to try to ensure there are no further budget cuts.

Cork based GP and secretary of the NAGP Dr Don Punch said “GP services are now at breaking point and we predict severe difficulties in coping with the day to day running of our practices and our patient’s health issues.”

President of the NAGP Dr Conor McGee added “Our association seeks to highlight the impact the cuts will have on the community. The recent 7.5 per cent cut in GP’s fees will result in 8 per cent of practices in Ireland facing major financial difficulties, as GP’s will no longer be able to afford to run their practices.

This could result in the closure of over 120 general practices around the country. This nationwide campaign hopes to reinforce our total commitment to our patients and the service that we offer them.

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