Statement by Irish Medical Organisation - FEMPI
Wednesday 8th November 2017 The restoration of FEMPI has been the key priority for the IMO for the past number of years particularly in the context of negotiations on new contractual provisions for GPs between the IMO, Department of Health and the HSE. During the ongoing contract negotiation process the IMO have made clear that a roadmap for FEMPI reversal is an essential element to reaching a sustainable agreement along with funding for new services.
We welcome the commencement of a process to deal with the matter and expect that the process will be in line with what has already been agreed in the Memorandum of Understanding on the GP Contract negotiations with the IMO that being that a similar process to that which applied to public servants will be put in place. However, we will be seeking an accelerated restoration given the fact that General Practice has suffered a reduction of 38% in resources each year since 2008. This has directly led to the current crisis situation where practices are increasingly unviable, vacancies are not being filled, and as GPs retire younger GPs are choosing to emigrate rather than practice in Ireland where the future is uncertain at best. The lack of resources is the obstacle to much needed reform, the delivery of new services to patients in General Practice and keeping our GP Trainees in Ireland.
In relation to fee setting the IMO expect that the current process agreed under the Framework Agreement between the IMO, Department of Health and the HSE will continue to be utilised in respect of all publicly funded contracts.
For many years now GPs have seen demand increasing with no corresponding increase in the capacity of General Practice to take on additional work in the absence of significant resources. Currently many practices around the country have closed their patient lists as they are simply unable to take on new patients. If the Government is serious about delivering more care to patients in the community rather than in the hospital setting it must ensure GPs are given the resources to do so quickly as otherwise the current situation will deteriorate even further.