Health Minister Praises Ongoing Work Of GPs

GP's have been praised for the important role they played in the battle to tackle the Covid-19 pandemic, by the Health Minister Robin Swann, in his address to the British Medical Associations' Local Medical Committee Conference.

Minister Swann commended the key role of General Practice in the successful delivery of the vaccination programme and the work undertaken in establishing Primary Care Covid-19 Centres, which he said had protected our health and social care system from being overwhelmed.

Also recognising the continued roll out of the Primary Care Multi-Disciplinary Team Programme, Minister Swann said: "The MDT Programme Teams in the Health and Social Care Board and the Department are currently taking forward a process to develop a 'road map' for the full roll-out of the model across all GP Federation areas."
News Image
In the course of his address Minister Swann noted the increased pressures facing General Practice with a rise in patient contacts from an estimated 12.7million in 2014 to almost 15 million in 2019.  He also stressed that GP practices continue to be available for patients, providing both face to face appointments and alternative consultation options as appropriate.

The Minister reiterated the need to encourage even more medical students to choose a career in General Practice.

He said: "In recognition of the increasing demand for primary care services, my Department has already increased the number of GP trainees by over 70% from 2015 levels. Work has also recently commenced on a review of GP trainee places, to make sure there are enough GPs to meet our primary care needs into the future."

In closing, the Minister extended his personal thanks to GPs and their teams for their diligence and professionalism which he said: "had seen them at the frontline of the fight against Covid and would place them at the heart of our rebuilding and restructuring of Health and Social Care services into the future."

Related Northern Ireland News Stories
Click here for the latest headlines.

11 March 2003
Primary care must be strengthened says Browne
The role of primary care has to be strengthened and expanded, NIO Health Minister Des Browne has told delegates at the ‘Primary Care-Moving Forward’ conference in Armagh today.
07 June 2004
Minister launches consultation on primary health care
Health minister Angela Smith has launched ‘Caring For People Beyond Tomorrow’, a consultation document which sets out a strategic framework for the development of primary care services over the next two decades.
11 April 2013
£40m Health Care Centres Announced For NI
Two new £40m health care centres for Northern Ireland have been given the go-ahead. The new Lisburn and Newry facilities will accommodate GPs as well as a number of community services provided by the Trusts.
14 September 2012
Cancer Patients Missing Out On NI Treatment Targets
Cancer patients across Northern Ireland are starting treatment late as health trusts fail on basic performance standards, it has emerged. Last April, the health minister said 95% of people who were urgently referred with suspected cancer should begin treatment within 62 days.
18 October 2010
Politicians Help 'Kick Hate Into Touch'
An innovative campaign, the 'Unite Against Hate' sporting weekend has been launched. Stormont First Minister Peter Robinson and his Junior Minister Gerry Kelly (pictured) joined forces to support the campaign which highlights all forms of hate crime and challenges people here to unite to stop it.