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GPs sceptical of NHS reform plans

A poll for the Royal College of GPs has revealed the unpopularity of the Government's NHS reform proposals, with six out of 10 questioned disagreeing with the plans.

The study highlights how many GPs are sceptical that patient care will improve under the plans, which will see them take control of around £80 billion of NHS funds.

Around 70% think the reforms will not improve the relationship between GPs and hospital consultants, while there are serious question marks over whether they will cut NHS red tape.

More than 70% of GPs quizzed said they "disagreed" or "strongly disagreed" that the NHS would be improved by proposals to create a larger market in healthcare, using private firms.

The poll, of more than 1,800 GPs, found 52 per cent disagreed or strongly disagreed that the reforms would create a patient-led NHS.

Some 43 per cent said the reforms would not improve health outcomes - such as tackling cancer or deaths from heart disease - with another 27% neither agreeing or disagreeing.

Overall, 32 per cent disagreed with the direction of the reforms, 29% strongly disagreed and another 15 per cent neither agreed or disagreed.

Only one in five (20 per cent) agreed with the direction of the plans, and only 4% strongly agreed.

RCGP chairman Clare Gerada said: "These results highlight the continuing concerns many of our members have about the proposals outlined in the Health Bill."

Copyright © Press Association 2011

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