Johnstone steps up call for GP funding for deprived areas

Alison Johnstone MSP, Health spokesperson for the Scottish Greens, today (7 Nov) stepped up her call for the government to better target GP practice spending in the most deprived areas to help tackle health inequalities.

Figures released today show that practices in the most deprived 20 per cent of postcodes are paid on average just £2.28 more per patient than practices in the least deprived 20 per cent of postcodes.

In January this year, Alison wrote to Health Secretary Shona Robison arguing for a fairer funding model to enable GPs to have longer consultations to address their patients' complex needs.

Alison Johnstone MSP said:

"Practices in deprived areas typically have longer patient lists and complex health and social care needs, including mental health difficulties and financial stress. There is a strong argument for providing more support to deprived practices and ringfencing funds for practice development.

"All GPs are working hard to meet their patients' needs, and those working in remote and rural areas face particular challenges, but we cannot neglect the needs of young people living in areas of high deprivation. Many people in Scotland's cities are struggling to access a practice and we need to see urgent investment in primary care.

"The Scottish Government has previously agreed that the new GP contract can help to tackle health inequalities and we hope that those commitments are realised."