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GPs per patient down 2.2% in a year as practices deliver 26m appointments in July

Totally-qualified, full-time equal GPs in England dropped from 27,750 in July 2021 to 27,507 in July 2022 – a drop of 0.9%, figures from NHS Digital present.

Numbers of sufferers registered with GP practices rose from slightly below 61m to 61.8m over the identical interval, taking GPs per 100,000 sufferers from round 45.5 all the way down to 44.5 – a 2.2% fall.

Information on GP appointments present that practices delivered a complete of 26m appointments in July this yr excluding COVID-19 vaccinations – up by round 110,000 in contrast with July 2021 – and up greater than 5% in contrast with July 2019, earlier than the pandemic. Round two thirds of appointments had been delivered face-to-face.

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GP workforce

The figures got here as BMA leaders warned {that a} ‘untimely’ determination from the federal government to pause routine asymptomatic COVID-19testing of NHS workers might go away workers and sufferers at elevated danger – and add to strain on the workforce.

GPonline evaluation revealed earlier this yr that the mismatch between sufferers and the GP workforce was rising quick in components of England, with a 4% rise in sufferers per GP in some built-in care system areas inside only a five-month interval from December 2021 to April 2022.

The most recent figures present that numbers of GP companions have continued to fall quickly in England – with the variety of FTE GP companions down by 320 within the yr to July 2022. FTE GP companions fell by 1.9% over the previous yr – greater than twice the drop amongst all totally certified GPs.

Salaried GPs are up 3.1% in contrast with 12 months in the past to 9,764, and the variety of GP trainees in England in July 2022 was up 13.1% in contrast with a yr earlier to 7,750.

Sustained decline

The decline within the complete GP workforce over the previous yr maintains a gentle development. Within the 5 years from June 2017 to June 2022, normal apply misplaced 1,554 FTE fully-qualified GPs – a drop of 5.3% – evaluation by GPonline reveals.

The BMA warned earlier this yr that point was working out to reverse the ‘sustained decline’ within the GP workforce.

In Could, BMA GP committee workforce lead Dr Samira Anane stated: ‘With out actual funding, a devoted workforce plan, and sufficient assets for major care to perform correctly, these month-to-month staffing figures will proceed to spiral – and it’ll be too late for anybody to do something.’

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