MSP seeks answers on Fife’s GP crisis

Claire Baker
Claire Baker

Serious questions have been asked over the extent of Fife’s GP crisis.

And Claire Baker, Fife MSP, has called on both NHS Fife and the Scottish Government to “get their heads out the sand and face up to the reality of the situation.”

Her comments come after she raised questions in Parliament to try to find out how many local surgeries had vacancies, which were having recruitment problems and how many posts were being covered by locums, to be told by the former health secretary that the figures were held by NHS Fife and were not known by the government.

And she said that when she asked NHS Fife she was told that the information was held by indivdual GP surgeries and GPs were not employed directly by the health board.

She said: “Fife is clearly facing a GP crisis. Doctors know this, patients know this, yet both NHS Fife and the Scottish Government want to try and keep everyone in the dark. This is simply unacceptable.

“Both the board and the cabinet secretary must get their heads out of the sand and face up to the reality of the situation in front of them.

“We won’t find a solution until they can accept there is a problem.”

Dr Frances Elliot, medical director, said: “NHS Fife has been very open about the challenges in recruiting to some GP vacancies. This experience is not exclusive to Fife and is replicated by boards across the country.”