The Royal College of General Practitioners highlights Patient safety issues arising from GP fatigue

RCGP warn of risk of GP fatigue to Patient Safety

Fatigue among overworked GPs is becoming so prevalent that it could jeopardise patient safety on a widespread scale unless urgent action is taken to address this, the Royal College of General Practitioners warns today… …unrelenting and increasing workload pressures are pushing dedicated GPs to their limits as they try to cope with rocketing patient numbers with diminishing resources… …the College warns that there is considerable potential for patient harm – such as medication errors and mistaken patient identity – if GPs become persistently over-tired… …Patients are also routinely living with multiple and chronic conditions, which are far more complex to deal with, especially within the constraints of a standard 10-minute GP-patient consultation. In England, the number of patients with more than one long term condition was predicted to rise from 1.9 million in 2008 to 2.9 million in 2018… …RCGP Chair Dr Maureen Baker said: “GPs will always work in the best interests of their patients – even when they are putting their own health at risk – but ironically this can actually have an adverse effect on patient safety. Few of us would voluntarily board a plane flown by a visibly tired pilot or get on a train where we knew the driver had spent too much time at the controls – yet there are no methods or systems for addressing doctor and staff fatigue in general practice… …You might be able to do this for a short time, but when it becomes the norm, mistakes are going to be made

If there was a clinically validated means by which Patients could safely use the internet to reduce the need for office visits by 40% (or in NHS GP language 148 million consultations per year), was proven to work in the NHS and was getting great feedback from Patients would GPs be too fatigued to adopt it?

Related post: Are Patients wasting GPs time OR are undocumented Doctor office visit only models wasting everyone’s time?

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