RCGP responds to GP Patient Survey

Responding to the latest GP Patient Survey, Professor Martin Marshall, Chair of the Royal College of GPs, said the following:

"For patient satisfaction in general practice to be so high following a year of unprecedented pressure is testament to the incredible efforts of GPs and their teams throughout the pandemic. Despite the challenges the profession has faced, patients have reported an increase in patients reporting a good experience; 95% of patients say they have confidence and trust in the healthcare professional they saw; and 94% say their needs were met when they last visited their local practice.

"We know that, particularly at the start of the pandemic, many patients did not seek medical attention when they were unwell. This has been for a number of reasons, reflected in this survey, including fear of catching Covid-19 and not wanted to burden the NHS. However, GP services have been available throughout the pandemic, and GPs and our teams are now making record numbers of patient consultations - 24 million in the last four weeks - alongside delivering the vast majority of the vaccination programme. Nevertheless, we continue to urge patients, if they are unwell or have symptoms than could be signs of serious illness such as cancer, to seek medical assistance.

"The results of this year's GP Patient Survey show how much general practice is valued by patients - and just how important it is to protect our service. GPs and our teams are working under intense workload and workforce pressures. The Government needs to act now to address these pressures by working to recruit more GPs and other members of the practice team, and address the 'undoable' workload in general practice that is leading to trained family doctors leaving the profession earlier than planned."

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Notes to editor

The Royal College of General Practitioners is a network of more than 52,000 family doctors working to improve care for patients. We work to encourage and maintain the highest standards of general medical practice and act as the voice of GPs on education, training, research and clinical standards.