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Family doctors now treat 200,000 fewer patients on Fridays


Family doctors now treat 200,000 fewer patients on Fridays – as rising number of part-time GPs enjoy long weekends off, figures suggest

  • GPs held 10million fewer appointments in total on Fridays compared to Mondays
  • Data shows number of consultations held each day gets worse through the week 
  • Patient groups warned people risk being left in agony over the weekend or forced to go to busy A&Es
  • Comes as top GP told MPs that the ‘reality’ is full-time GPs will soon be extinct










Family doctors are treating 200,000 fewer patients on Fridays as the surging number of part-time GPs enjoy long weekends off, figures suggest.

Surgeries conduct their highest number of appointments on a Monday – but availability gets progressively worse throughout the week.

Patient groups last night reacted with fury to the revelation, warning that people risk being left in agony over the weekend or forced to go to busy A&Es.

GPs conducted an average of 1.29million consultations each Monday in July but just 1.09million on Fridays – a fall of 16 per cent (stock photo)

GPs conducted an average of 1.29million consultations each Monday in July but just 1.09million on Fridays – a fall of 16 per cent (stock photo)

It comes a day after Martin Marshall, chairman of the Royal College of GPs, told MPs that the ‘reality’ is full-time GPs will soon be extinct.

GPs conducted an average of 1.29million consultations each Monday in July but just 1.09million on Fridays – a fall of 16 per cent.

And, over the past year, there were around 10million fewer appointments in total on Fridays than there were on Mondays, according to the latest data from NHS Digital.

Separate figures show three in four GPs work less than full-time, meaning fewer than 37.5 hours a week. And a more granular analysis reveals one in 12 GPs work only 15 hours a week or less.

Dennis Reed from Silver Voices, a campaign group for the over-60s, said: ‘Doctors should be offering a full service and it is simply not good enough to be tapering off care at the end of the week.

It comes a day after Martin Marshall, chairman of the Royal College of GPs, told MPs that the 'reality' is full-time GPs will soon be extinct

It comes a day after Martin Marshall, chairman of the Royal College of GPs, told MPs that the ‘reality’ is full-time GPs will soon be extinct 

‘Patients don’t stop getting sick just because it’s Friday. This risks leaving people sick or in pain over the weekend or pushing them to A&E.’

Responding to the figures, Professor Marshall said that flexible working – which allows GPs to work less than full time – ‘enables highly-trained family doctors to remain in the workforce, delivering the care that our patients need and deserve’.

He added: ‘It is down to individual practices to allocate their services in line with their team’s capacity and their understanding of [patients’] needs.’

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Written by Bourbiza Mohamed

A technology enthusiast and a passionate writer in the field of information technology, cyber security, and blockchain

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