Victoria Borwick – 2016 Parliamentary Question to the Department of Health

The below Parliamentary question was asked by Victoria Borwick on 2016-02-01.

To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what assessment he has made of the effect on health care provision in Central London of trends in the number of GPs retiring from single-handed practices (a) over the last five years and (b) in the next five years.

Alistair Burt

This is a matter for NHS England.

Where a single-handed general practitioner (GP) retires, it is the responsibility of NHS England to ensure the patients of that practice have continued access to National Health Service primary medical services.

When a single-handed GP retires an assessment is made on a case by case basis taking into account a range of factors including the demographic profile of patients, alternative local GP capacity and quality, and, patient and stakeholder engagement. This assessment informs the decision as to whether to procure a new service provider or to facilitate patients to register with alternative local GPs.

In terms of future planning NHS England and London Clinical Commissioning Groups are aware of the ages of GPs which may be an indication of future retirements, however, there is no set age for retirement. Capacity planning is constantly under review and considers both potential retirement as well as other factors such as population growth, premises and range of services to be provided which then informs commissioning strategy.