BMA guidance on exception reporting for senior doctors has now been published, please see the following link:

The guidance has been produced by the Terms and Conditions of Service team, with input from the Development, Communications and Professionalism Subcommittee and other committees. The guidance is aimed at senior doctors, primarily those in educational or clinical supervisor roles.

The guidance is in addition to that published in December for doctors undertaking the guardian of safe working hours role:

From BMA Comms

Comments from Dr Richard Vautrey feature in the Times, Guardian, Mail, Independent, iNews and a large number of regional publications following a BMJ investigation revealing that NHS organisations are paying millions of pounds to referral management schemes, often run by private firms, that screen and can prevent some patients being referred to hospital by their GPs. Dr Vautrey said: “CCGs are leaping at these schemes without any clear evidence of benefit and that they’re just hopeful that it might reduce their costs.It is a very, very short term approach to healthcare management. We need to see much more evaluation and not just keep making the same mistakes year after year.” He added: “As public bodies, there should be an expectation on every CCG to account for what it’s doing.”

Pulse reports that an audit run by a GP practice in East London reveals that chasing up patients with extra phone calls, emails and texts to encourage them to come in for a flu vaccine failed to increase the uptake. Commenting, Dr Andrew Green, said: This study quantifies what every GP receptionist in the country already knew, that there are patients who engage with preventative care, and those that don’t, and it is remarkable difficult to move patients from one group to the other.”

Responding to the announcement that NHS England are to introduce an app that offers people medical advice on their smartphone, Dr Chaand Nagpaul’s comments feature in the Guardian, Telegraph, Sun and Mail. Dr Nagpaul said: “Whilst it’s always important to maximise use of technology to empower patients and make efficient use of NHS resources, this initiative does not address the fundamental problem that we have a severe shortage of GPs and health professionals in community settings.” He added: “This proposal does not address this fundamental limitation and may make the situation worse,” he said. “What we should instead be doing is investing in having properly trained and appropriate clinical staff handling calls and requests from patients, complementing the use of new technologies.”

A number of senior MPs have written a letter to the PM calling for renewed cross-party working to tackle the social care crisis. Dr Mark Porter’s response to the letter from health committee chair Dr Sarah Wollaston, communities committee chair Clive Betts and public accounts committee chair Meg Hillier features in the Mirror. Dr Porter said: “The current crunch in health and social care is a direct result of years of inadequate funding, and politicians of all parties failing to take a long-term view on what needs to happen.” He added: “Now is the time to put politics to one side and reach a cross-party consensus on how to tackle this crisis.” Dr Porter was interviewed by Sky News calling for the government to urgently address the growing crisis in social care.

GP Online reports that the BMA has warned that that tendering requirements for the new MCP contracts could see GP services outsourced to private companies. Commenting, BMA GP executive committee member, Dr Gavin Ralston, said: “For some GPs being part of a fully integrated MCP may seem attractive given the current pressures on general practice.  However there are clear risks with giving up a national contract for this option, as there will be limited opportunities for GP practices to return to the exact contract arrangements they were previously on.” He added:  “The key benefit GPs must look for when considering the MCP contract is whether it reduces bureaucracy and workload. Whatever model GPs choose, the current crisis in general practice will not be addressed by contract changes. Instead a systematic programme of investment in general practice by government is needed.”

Emails seen by the Independent detail how Jeremy Hunt and senior officials at the Department of Health collaborated with Health Education England over the imposition of the junior doctor contract.

In other news, BBC News Online reports that a third of hospital trusts in England issued alerts warning they needed urgent action to cope with the pressure of patient numbers last month.

BBC News online reports that according to a study by Oxford University, the NHS programme for screening those at high risk of type 2 diabetes is unlikely to have much impact.

BMA online/trade

NHS to trial smartphone app

Guardian, Friday 06 January 2017, (Dr Chaand Nagpaul)

NHS tests artificial intelligence app

Daily Telegraph, Friday 06 January 2017, (Dr Chaand Nagpaul)

Will smartphone app replace 111 helpline?

Sun, Friday 06 January 2017, (Dr Chaand Nagpaul)

Diagnosis with new smartphone app

Daily Mail, Friday 06 January 2017, (Dr Chaand Nagpaul)

Senior MPs call on PM to solve social care crisis

Daily Mirror, Friday 06 January 2017, (Dr Mark Porter)

Emails reveal government colluded with independent body to impose contract

Independent, Friday 06 January 2017, (BMA Mention)

Health secretary wants to incentivise GP one-stop shops

Pulse, Thursday 05 January 2017, (Dr Chaand Nagpaul)

MCP deal could see outsourcing of general practice

GP Online, Thursday 05 January 2017, (Dr Gavin Ralston)

 Questions raised over efficiency of NHS referral management centres

80 x Regional, Thursday 05 January 2017, (Dr Richard Vautrey)

NHS groups paying millions to block GP referrals

Guardian, Thursday 05 January 2017, (Dr Richard Vautrey)

NHS spending millions on private companies that stop GP referrals

Independent, Thursday 05 January 2017, (Dr Richard Vautrey)

NHS pays firm millions to query hospital referrals

iNews, Thursday 05 January 2017, (Dr Richard Vautrey)

Hospital spending millions on scheme to stop patients having treatment

Daily Mail, Thursday 05 January 2017, (Dr Richard Vautrey)

Warnings of GP referrals in North Durham

Northern Echo, Thursday 05 January 2017, (Dr Richard Vautrey)

Extra calls and messages fails to boost flu vaccine uptake

Pulse, Wednesday 04 January 2017, (Dr Andrew Green)

Practice staff “at risk” from patient contract confusion

Pulse, Wednesday 04 January 2017, (Dr Robert Morley)


Other items noticed by JF

Applications for BMA research grants open

Doctors renew war on sugar


JF Noted this over the Xmas period. Compare and contrast !!

Tesco Vegetable Suet

100 gms contains     221 calories    9.3  Fat

Atora Light Shredded Vegetable Suet

100 gms contains     709  calories    67.3  Fat