Kevin Barron, chair of Parliament’s health committee, claimed that the BMA’s Save Our Surgeries campaign had misled patients into believing that their surgery would be privatised.
The BMA chairman Dr Hamish Meldrum said doctors fear that polyclinics will be built in areas where they were not needed, forcing existing practices to merge or compete. He feared a ‘one size fits all’ approach to primary care, but accepted that some GP’s campaign material may have been ‘over the top.’
Work has already begun on a network of up to 150 polyclinics in London, combining GPs, community nurses, midwives, dentists and some secondary care services like diagnostics and minor surgery.
Labour MP Dr Howard Stoate said that a new approach was necessary to deliver the Government’s target of access to a GP or primary care professional within 48 hours.