Tag Archives: GP shortage

Revealed: Long GP waits in rural areas three times worse than urban ones

  • New research reveals four week waits for GPs three times higher in rural areas than urban ones
  • Lib Dems to adopt pre-manifesto with right to see a GP within a week at its heart
  • Ed Davey calls for strategy to close urban rural divide in access to GPs

The proportion of people waiting four weeks or more for a GP appointment is three times higher in rural parts of England than in London, stark new figures published by the Liberal Democrats have revealed.

It comes as Liberal Democrat Leader Ed Davey calls on the government to launch a new strategy to improve access to GPs in rural areas. The Liberal Democrats are also set to put their proposals to give everyone the right to see a GP within a week at the heart of their pre-manifesto being adopted today.

The House of Commons Library research, commissioned by the Liberal Democrats, shows that on average people in rural areas are facing significantly longer waits for GP appointments than those in urban ones.

One in five (20.6%) patients living in rural areas waited two weeks or more for a GP appointment between April and June of this year, compared to 16.9% of those in urban areas.

The divide for waits of four weeks or more for a GP appointment was even more stark. 6% of patients in rural areas faced waits of 28 days or more for a GP appointment, around a third higher than the 4.6% of those facing four-week waits in urban ones.

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24 April 2023 – today’s press releases

  • 51 million GP appointments lasted less than 5 minutes in past year
  • Five times Sunak betrayed British businesses
  • Sewage vote: Judgement day for Conservative MPs
  • Raab Urgent Question: Lib Dems challenge PM to come clean over advice on bullying complaints

51 million GP appointments lasted less than 5 minutes in past year

51 million GP appointments in the last year lasted less than five minutes, new research by the Liberal Democrats has revealed.

The figures also reveal a postcode lottery with more than 21% of GP appointments in some areas lasting five minutes or less.

The party warned that the government’s failure to recruit more GPs has meant patients are “waiting for weeks to get an appointment only to be rushed through in a matter of minutes.”

The Commons Library analysis is based on NHS figures for the year between March 2022, when the data was first published, and February 2023. It provides a figure for the first time on the number of five-minute GP appointments over an entire year, broken down by local area.

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21 April 2023 – today’s press releases

  • Raab resigns: By-election now
  • Ed Davey on way to Raab’s constituency to a demand a by-election
  • 10 million people give up on getting a GP appointment creating “ticking time bomb” for NHS

Raab resigns: By-election now

Responding to the news of Dominic Raab’s resignation from Cabinet, Liberal Democrat Deputy Leader Daisy Cooper said:

Dominic Raab has shown he is not only unfit to serve as a minister, but is totally unfit to represent his constituents in Parliament. He should resign as an MP and trigger a by-election so the people of Esher and Walton can finally have the MP they deserve.

Voters across Surrey and the Blue Wall are fed up with this endless Conservative chaos and MPs who take their communities for granted. At the next election in Esher and Walton, it will be a two horse race between more Conservative party chaos or a hardworking Liberal Democrat MP who will listen and stand up for local people.

Ed Davey on way to Raab’s constituency to a demand a by-election

Today, Liberal Democrat Leader Ed Davey will be knocking on doors and speaking to Liberal Democrat activists in Dominic Raab’s constituency, Esher and Walton.

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29 March 2023 – today’s press releases

  • Only 2% of car thefts resulted in a charge last year
  • Government criticised for having no dedicated team working on water pollution
  • Ethics adviser must investigate Sunak over wife’s shares in company benefiting from government scheme
  • PMQs: Raab challenged over GP crisis in his own constituency

Only 2% of car thefts resulted in a charge last year

  • Home Secretary blasted as “asleep at the wheel” as tens of thousands of car thefts go unsolved
  • Liberal Democrats are calling for a return to proper community policing with known officers on the beat to clamp down on crime.

New research commissioned by the Liberal Democrats has shown that just 2% of car thefts in England and Wales result in a charge.

The official Home Office data, analysed by the House of Commons Library, revealed there were 100,000 car thefts in the the first three quarters of 2022.

Of the instances of car theft, an eye-watering 68,800 went unsolved. And – of those cases who did have a suspect – just 2% resulted in a charge.

Analysis of the statistics shows that the number of car thefts rose by over a third in the past year when comparing the same time period in 2021 to 2022, up from 74,605 in the first three quarters of 2021 to 97,225.

Liberal Democrats are calling for a return to proper community policing with known officers on the beat to clamp down on crime.

Analysis by the House of Commons Library found that the number of community police officers have fallen by more than 4,000 since 2015 across England and Wales.

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28 March 2023 – today’s press releases

  • Number of GP practices falls by over 500 since 2019
  • Lib Dems call for ban on strip searches in schools
  • Coffey attacks farming journalists

Number of GP practices falls by over 500 since 2019

  • Lib Dem Leader launches Local Election campaign calling for a return to “proper local health services” amid GP shortages and appointment delays
  • Rural areas “bearing the brunt of GP practice closures”, forcing people to drive long distances to see a doctor
  • Government on course to break Conservative manifesto pledge on doctor recruitment as GP numbers plummet by over 850 since the last election

New analysis of NHS data by the Liberal Democrats has found there are 547 fewer open and active GP practices in England compared to 2019 – despite rising patient numbers.

At the last election, the Conservative party promised to recruit 6,000 more GPs. However, today’s analysis reveals there are now 850 fewer GPs compared to 2019.

Rural communities are suffering most from GP practices closing. A recent study found 206 villages where patients must travel at least 5 miles to see a doctor – a 12% rise on 2017.

This new analysis of NHS figures follows a research poll commissioned by the Liberal Democrats which reveals over a quarter (29%) of UK adults have tried and failed to get a face-to-face GP appointment in their local area over the past twelve months.

Embarrassingly for the Government, GP practices are even closing in the Heath Secretary’s own constituency, with a Cambridgeshire practice serving thousands of local people due to close its doors this month.

Tomorrow (Wednesday 29th March), Liberal Democrat Leader Ed Davey will launch his party’s local election campaign in Hertfordshire, where he will call on the Government to invest in local health services. The South of England is the worst part of the country for GP appointment problems, where over 1 in 3 people tried and failed to secure a GP appointment last year.

The Liberal Democrats are calling on the government to recruit 8,000 more GPs and have set out plans to give patients a legal right to see a GP within 7 days. It would be achieved through increasing training places for GPs, a programme to retain experienced doctors and staff, and launching a recruitment drive to encourage those who’ve left the NHS to return.

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13 February 2023 – yesterday’s press releases

A technology glitch means that I’m a little further behind than expected. Normal service will resume shortly…

  • Revealed: 12-hour A&E waits quadrupled in most areas of England last year
  • Sewage: Lib Dems bid to block bill which removes clean water regulation
  • Revealed: GP postcode lottery as number of registered patients soars

Revealed: 12-hour A&E waits quadrupled in most areas of England last year

Four in five areas in England saw the number of 12-hour waits at A&E quadruple last year, shocking new analysis by the Liberal Democrats has revealed.

The figures reveal a devastating rise in long delays to be admitted to hospital from A&E right across the country.

In the worst-hit areas, almost one in four patients waited 12 hours or more to be admitted to hospital from A&E.

Previous research has highlighted how long waits to be admitted to hospital at A&E can have devastating consequences including the risks of a patient dying or becoming seriously unwell.

A shocking 91 of 113 NHS hospital trusts in England saw the number of patients waiting over 12 hours more than quadruple in 2022 compared to the previous year. Only four of the trusts saw the number of 12-hour waits fall. The figures are based on data on A&E waiting times from NHS England, which were compiled by the House of Commons Library.

Blackpool Teaching Hospitals Trust was the worst in the country with over 24% of patients waiting at least 12 hours at A&E to be admitted to hospital in 2022. This was followed by North Middlesex where 23% faced waits of 12 hours or more, up ninefold on the previous year. Other hospital trusts with the highest number of patients waiting 12 hours or more include Royal Cornwall (21%), East Cheshire (21%) and Croydon (21%).

Overall, 36 trusts saw at least 10% of patients waiting over 12 hours to be admitted to hospital from A&E in 2022. This compares to not a single trust seeing more than 10% of patients waiting that long the previous year.

The Lib Dems have slammed the government for allowing the “devastating delays”, and called for an urgent plan to tackle staff shortages. The party is calling for a ‘Carer’s Minimum Wage,’ £2 above the minimum wage, to tackle shortages in the social care sector that are contributing to overcrowded hospitals and record delays at A&E.

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4-6 November 2022 – the weekend’s press releases

  • Philp’s refusal to apologise shows contempt for the public
  • Lib Dems call for legal right to see a GP within 7 days as millions of patients face delays
  • Philp’s Manston comments show “shocking and callous complacency”
  • Liberal Democrats to Back Bill to Protect Powers of the Senedd
  • PM must sack Williamson

Philp’s refusal to apologise shows contempt for the public

Responding to Chris Philp’s refusal to apologise for his role in the mini-budget this morning, Liberal Democrat Treasury Spokesperson Sarah Olney said:

Chris Philp has shown huge arrogance by refusing to recognise his role in crashing the economy while second in command at the treasury. His legacy will be higher taxes and cuts to public services for years to come.

The British public deserve an apology for the pain he and his colleagues put them through. That he refuses to give one shows the contempt with which he holds us all.

Lib Dems call for legal right to see a GP within 7 days as millions of patients face delays

  • Ed Davey announces plans to give patients a legal right to see their GP within a week, or within 24 hours if in urgent need.
  • New figures reveal a stark postcode lottery with one in four people in some areas waiting over two weeks for a GP appointment
  • Lib Dem Leader says the Govt must increase recruitment and retention of GPs, introduce a 24/7 booking line and cut bureaucracy to free up appointments

The Liberal Democrats have set out plans to give patients a legal right to see a GP within seven days, or within 24 hours if in urgent need.

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3 November 2022 – today’s press releases

  • Bank of England rate rise: Chancellor must address the country
  • Asylum seekers abandoned – Braverman failing in her duty as Home Secretary
  • Elin Jones Wrong to Defend Mark Drakeford’s Qatar Trip Say Lib Dems
  • Number of GPs and GP Practices in Wales Fall
  • Interest rates: Chancellor must address the country with a plan to save homeowners
  • Davey: Recession warning a “badge of shame” for Rishi Sunak and Conservative government

Bank of England rate rise: Chancellor must address the country

Commenting ahead of today’s interest rate decision from the Bank of England, Liberal Democrat Treasury Spokesperson Sarah Olney MP said:

The Chancellor must address the country immediately after the rate rise decision to spell out a plan to save homeowners on the brink. He should either come to Parliament or hold a press conference to announce support for families facing mortgage bill rises worth hundreds of pounds a month.

Hardworking families are being left to pay the price for weeks of Conservative chaos. People are desperately worried about how they are going to pay these frightening mortgage payments after tomorrow.

The Government cannot hide away, especially after their long list of economic failures.

Asylum seekers abandoned – Braverman failing in her duty as Home Secretary

The Liberal Democrats have warned that Home Secretary Suella Braverman is “failing in her duty” as Home Secretary, after reports asylum seekers have been left stranded in central London by the Home Office.

It comes after Robert Jenrick emphasised last night on ITV’s Peston that the Home Secretary has a duty not to release asylum seekers into destitution.

Suella Braverman also assured Parliament on Monday that she had refused to release people into local communities “without having anywhere for them to stay”.

Commenting, Liberal Democrat Home Affairs Spokesperson Alistair Carmichael said:

Asylum seekers being abandoned with no place to stay in central London is the most blatant sign that the system is completely broken.

Suella Braverman is failing in her basic duty as Home Secretary. She needs to urgently explain how this has been allowed to happen, despite the assurances given to Parliament earlier this week.

It’s intolerable that vulnerable people are being left without help because of the endless chaos and incompetence of this government.

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22 September 2022 – today’s press releases

  • Fracking: Rural areas treated like guinea pigs
  • Interest rates: Homeowners being punished by Government failure to control inflation
  • Recession: Blame lies with Conservative MPs
  • NHS announcement an ‘A, B, C of failure’
  • Lib Dems table motion to cancel Parliament recess and scrutinise mini Budget
  • Kwarteng growth plan: Shocking admission of Conservative failure

Fracking: Rural areas treated like guinea pigs

Responding to the British Geological Survey’s Report on fracking, Liberal Democrat Environment Spokesperson Wera Hobhouse said:

The government’s own experts have refused to say fracking is safe. That they choose to plough on regardless shows a callous disregard for our communities and countryside. From Surrey to Somerset, the government are treating people in rural areas like guinea pigs.

The Conservatives obsession with fracking lays bare that they don’t actually think that Climate change is happening and are not willing to take the urgent action needed. They are delaying climate action at every corner. The mask has finally slipped and is revealing Liz Truss and Jacob Reece Mogg as climate change deniers. It is bizarre that this has become their priority, rather than renewables: the cheapest and most popular form of energy.

If people suffer polluted water and dangerous earthquakes, this decision will prove unforgivable.

Interest rates: Homeowners being punished by Government failure to control inflation

Responding to the Bank of England raising interest rates by 0.5%, Liberal Democrat Treasury spokesperson Sarah Olney MP said:

This a hammer blow to struggling homeowners who are being punished by the Government’s failure to control inflation. This monster rate rise could have been avoided if Conservative Ministers bothered to take action sooner on energy bills and the rising cost of living. Instead, the Bank of England is left with no choice but to hike mortgage costs for millions.

It is first time buyers I fear for the most, who have scrimped and saved for their first house. Tomorrow Liz Truss has to clean up the mess made by this Conservative Government and bailout families and pensioners who will suffer as a result of this mortgage hike. This should start with re-installing an Emergency Mortgage Support Fund which was cruelly scrapped by Conservative Ministers.

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30 June 2022 – the overnight press release

Government neglect shown as quarter of GP posts could be vacant in ten years

Responding to analysis published today by the Health Foundation that says a quarter of GP posts could be vacant in a decade, Liberal Democrat Health Spokesperson, Daisy Cooper MP, said:

The Conservatives have been running our NHS and our health services into the ground for years. They have taken our health service for granted and that needs to change.

People are struggling to get appointments and GPs are under more pressure than ever, no one wins from this Conservative Government’s neglect.

GP surgeries are

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25 November 2021 – today’s press releases

It looks as though we’ve had another surge of press releases so we thought that we might share them with you…

  • Channel crossings: Govt must rule out dangerous ‘pushback’ tactics
  • GP Shortages: Only 4-in-10 able to get same-day appointment
  • Nick Fletcher’s Dr Who comments straight out of the 1950s

Channel crossings: Govt must rule out dangerous ‘pushback’ tactics

Responding to Immigration Minister Kevin Foster’s refusal to rule out using ‘pushback’ tactics to turn back small boats in the Channel, Liberal Democrat Home Affairs Spokesperson Alistair Carmichael MP said:

It is disgraceful that the government is even considering pushing boats back in the Channel after yesterday’s tragic

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