Doctors group points to 'crisis in manpower'

Junior Health Minister Alex White has been urged to attend an emergency meeting of GPs at the end of the month to discuss concerns over the new general medical scheme contracts.

The Irish Medical Organisation has strongly condemned the proposals that fees can be varied by the Health Minister at any time and the IMO is also rejecting the Government's grounds for not negotiating fees.

Meanwhile, doctors from across the east coast attended a meeting in Dublin last night - organised by the National Association of General Practitioners - to discuss the main issues facing the profession.

"Our position is: it is impossible to sever discussions on content from fees, it is simply unworkable," he says.

"We want to do a root and branch review to ensure that we can provide a proper contract to meet the needs of an aging population, as well as an aging workforce of general practitioners.

"One in eight GPs in 64 years or older in this country. We're at retirement age. We have a crisis in manpower and that needs to be part of the discussions."

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