Almost 100 GP practices closed in 2019, data shows

12th October 2020 by NASGP

Almost 100 GP practices closed in 2019, data shows

Some 99 GP practices in the UK shut for good last year, according to new figures collected by Pulse.

The closures, which included mergers and closures of branch practices, threw an estimated 350,000 patients off lists. The fall in practices numbers last year was not as drastic as the fall in 2018, when 138 practices closed. 

The 2019/20 GP contract saw the creation of primary care networks in England, as well as an increase in funding for clinical staff. 

In London, 18 practices closed last year. Londonwide LMCs told Pulse that it estimated that a third of all London practices have outstanding vacancies. 

Dr Richard Fieldhouse said: “Whilst some of these closures could result in an increase in efficiency and services, unplanned closures — either as a result of resignations or an inability to recruit GPs locally — can cause the local provision of healthcare to implode. This leaves both patients and practices struggling to cope, and as GP locums we are often called in to help out neighbouring practices as a domino effect takes hold.  

“The NASGP has long been campaigning for local health care systems to adopt ways to stabilise the local GP workforce. Resources such as NASGP Locum Chambers can help recruit GPs to the area and reduce the chances of disruption and closures. “

For more information about NASGP Locum Chambers, read more on our website or contact NASGP directly.

"I signed up to NASGP when I CCT'd in December 2022 and I've been using LocumDeck for all aspects of my work since. I have tried a few different platforms but nothing compares to the comfort and practicality of LocumDeck.

The NASGP support team is absolutely wonderful and they walked me through the initial set-up. Once the set-up is complete, the booking process is so easy and literally happens with the click of a button. I also love the paperless pension form submissions through LocumDeck and it takes me no more than two minutes each month to send all the necessary pension forms to PCSE. I have had so many queries while getting used to LocumDeck and every single one of them has been answered within 24 hours by Ali and Jacqui from NASGP support. They have even helped me contact a few practice managers on my behalf whenever there has been an issue.

As a newly-qualified GP, it can be quite daunting to go into the world of GP locuming and this can often push trainees to take up less-than-ideal jobs reluctantly. The NASGP website gave me all the necessary information and resources that I needed to seamlessly transition from a GP trainee to a GP locum.

I have already recommended LocumDeck to all my colleagues and it is a must-have for anyone thinking about entering the GP locum world. GP locums are an extremely valuable resource to the primary care workforce and I wish every practice in the country would sign up to NASGP and get the most out of this rapidly evolving community."

Dr Priya Arunachalam, GP, Southampton

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