IMO welcomes the Minister’s acknowledgement that the State needs to rebuild its relationship with GPs and the need for a new GP Contract
Dr. McGarry, Chair of the IMO GP Committee welcomed the acknowledgment by the Minister of Health of the need for a new GP Contract. He said; “The IMO secured a commitment to a new contract from this Minister’s predecessor and we have an agreed framework with the Memorandum of Understanding as to how that contract can be delivered. What we are missing, and hope that the Minister will commit to, is the resources required to deliver a modern GP service.”
At a recent meeting with the Minister the Chair of the GP Committee Dr Padraig McGarry, reiterated the importance of supporting and developing general practice so as to ensure that GPs are in a position to deliver a wide range of care to patients at local level. The priority is the delivery of Chronic Care programmes in the context of a new GP Contract and to focus on age cohorts at the expense of wider health issues would be a mistake and one which the IMO and its GP members cannot support. “Of course we can look at a plan to extend GP services which are free at point of access across the population but this is, as the Minister himself says, in the context of a new GP Contract. The cart cannot come before the horse and we must look at meeting the current health needs of the population.”
The IMO look forward to working with the Minister and the HSE on expanding the range of GP services for patients and playing an active role in being part of the solution to the current crisis in our public health services. General Practice has been decimated in recent years with successive cutbacks and we must now build up infrastructure and capacity all of which requires commitment.
While the IMO welcome the establishment of an Oireachtas Committee to develop a ten year vision for our health services but it warns that we cannot use this committee as an excuse to deprive the services of much needed funds now.