06 October 2014
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ICGP pre-budget submission 2015

The ICGP has published its pre-budget submission for Budget 2015. The ICGP is calling in its submission for the Government to recognise the vital role general practice plays in healthcare in Ireland. Specifically, the ICGP is calling for the Government to prioritise the following:

  • Invest in general practice for the future needs of all patients
  • Support general practice in rural and deprived areas
  • Move towards universal healthcare in a properly planned way that won't overwhelm general practice
  • Ensure a future for graduates
  • Plan for the impact of a growing and ageing population

Dr Margaret O'Riordan, ICGP Medical Director, said:

"Last year's budget removed over €300m from primary care. This led to significant distress for many of our patients as seen in the disastrous medical probity exercise. We would like to see the Government take a more positive approach to supporting general practice in Budget 2015.

Small changes, such as improving access to diagnostics for all patients, could have a very significant impact on the overall health sector and health outcomes by reducing the burden on secondary care, and freeing general practice capacity for participation in programmes like Heartwatch which have a proven track record.

General practitioners are consistently being asked to provide more services at a lower cost. At a macro level, the reductions in GMS payments in recent years have reduced turnover for general practitioners whereas, as in most businesses, overheads have increased. This has led to many GPs operating close to insolvency. At a micro level, payments from the HSE do not cover the cost of some services such as suturing. In rural areas, the removal of distance codes has also had a significant impact in terms of additional costs for general practitioners being asked to provide a service to GMS patients in these areas.

The impact of population growth, lack of investment and rise in emigration of young GPs threatens the viability of general practice in Ireland. In this pre-budget submission, our overall message to the Government is to address these issues before further damage to general practice reduces the availability of services for future generations."

Click here for the ICGP pre-budget submission 2015

 

For reference

Marie-Therese Culligan
PR Strategy Ltd 
Tel: (01) 676 3705
Email: mtculligan@prstrategy.ie

Documents

 ICGP pre-budget submission 2015 (ICGP_Pre_Budget_Submission_2015.pdf | 563 KB)