Why it’s crucial the State heeds warnings of GPs

The National Association of General Practitioners says that the primary care system is close to collapse.

Terence Cosgrave talks to three doctors about the choices and challenges they face and why one doesn’t regret his decision to emigrate.

CUTBACKS in general practice have reached a breaking point, with many GPs operating at a loss or breaking even. It means that many will have to reduce their service to the public or even leave Ireland to earn a reasonable income. The result could be a devastating blow to general practice in Ireland – a service that is universally acknowledged by the public as the one area of the health service that works.

Dr David Janes, for example, is a GP in rural Waterford near the town of Clonmel. He says that last month he worked for nothing, as by the time he had paid for all his overheads, there was no money left to pay himself a salary. With a wife and three children, that position is untenable.

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