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Over 80% of UK GPs think patients are at risk in their surgery, survey finds

More than 80% of GPs believe that patients are being put at risk when they come into their surgery for an appointment, a new survey shows.

A poll of 1,395 GPs found only 13% said their practice was safe for patients all the time. Meanwhile, 85% expressed concerns about patient safety, with 2% saying patients were “rarely” safe, 22% saying they were safe “some of the time” and 61% saying they were safe “most of the time”.

Asked if they thought the risk to patient safety was increasing in their surgery, 70% said it was.

Family doctors identified lack of time with patients, workforce shortages, relentless workloads and heavy administrative burdens as the main reasons people receiving care could be exposed to risk. The survey, which was self-selecting, also found that:

  • 91% said more GPs would help improve the state of general practices.
  • 84% have had anxiety, stress or depression over the past year linked to their job.
  • 31% know a colleague who was physically abused by a patient in the last year.
  • 24% know of a member of general practice staff who has taken their own life due to work pressures.

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Source: The Guardian, 21 March 2022


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