So, lots of newly qualified GPs don\’t and won\’t have jobs as GPs.
One fully qualified GP is driving a taxi because he cannot find enough work as a doctor despite Government pledges to increase access to primary care and extend surgery opening hours.
Next week 2,500 doctors will qualify as GPs and the vast majority have not found full time jobs and will have to live \’hand to mouth\’, the British Medical Association has warned.
It costs the taxpayer around £250,000 to train each graduate to junior doctor level and many are considering travelling abroad or working in another speciality even though there is predicted to be shortage of GPs.
Dr Alex Smallwood, chairman of the GP trainees sub-committee at the British Medical Association said the problem was rife and was a \’huge betrayal\’ of junior doctors who had been encouraged into general practice.
He said: "Doctors will be stacking shelves, cleaning and driving taxis to make ends meet. If they can\’t get work as a doctor they have got to do something."
There are two explanations offered and one I\’m adding.
Mine is that markets, while pretty damn good, aren\’t in fact perfect. There\’s always a lag between people being qualified and their getting a job suitable for that qualification.
One of the other two is that extant GPs are greedy bastards and don\’t want to share the profits of their partnerships.
The second is that:
Prof Steve Field, chairman of the Royal College of GPs said practice partners were tightening their belts as income has dropped for the last three years and fears over the destablising effect of the Darzi polyclinics makes them reluctant to take on anyone long-term.
Now which you believe will probably depend upon your priors, but the idea that the market is just about to be comprehensively shaken up might make people hesitant to take on new partners seems likely enough to me.
Would you agree to expand production and share your income for the next 20 years with someone at a time when you\’re unsure what effect upon the business the building of a new large competing unit is going to have on that business?
Do we see fruit and veg shops expanding when Tesco builds next door?