Tory pledge to hire 6,000 extra GPs has been scrapped

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak has his blood pressure checked by pharmacist Peter Baillie during a visit to a GP surgery and pharmacy in Weston, Southampton, Hampshire. Picture date: Tuesday May 9, 2023. PA Photo. Patients will be able to obtain prescription medicines and oral contraception directly from pharmacies under a blueprint to ease the pressure on GPs' appointments. Treatments for seven common conditions including earache, sore throat and urinary tract infections will be available without seeing a doctor under plans announced by Rishi Sunak. See PA story HEALTH Pharmacies. Photo credit should read: Ben Birchall/PA Wire

A TORY manifesto pledge to hire 6,000 extra GPs has been scrapped.

Rishi Sunak refused to repeat the vow when challenged during an NHS visit yesterday, instead saying: “Right now, there are almost 2,000 more doctors working in general practice than in 2019.”

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak’s manifesto pledge to hire 6,000 extra GPs has been scrapped

Labour branded it “yet another broken promise”.

Shadow health minister Andrew Gwynne said: “The Conservatives have a plan for managed decline of the NHS.”

Meanwhile, it was revealed that tens of thousands of future docs will be trained by apprenticeship on the job, rather than via university.

NHS England chief Amanda Pritchard said: “Some young people want to start earning straight away.”

Standard routes currently see doctors train at university for at least five years and nurses at least three.

The NHS England chief said: “University isn’t right for every school-leaver and some young people want to start earning straight away, while others may decide on a career in healthcare later in life.

“This radical new approach could see tens of thousands of school-leavers becoming doctors and nurses, or other key healthcare roles, after being trained on the job over the next 25 years.

“But this move isn’t just something that will benefit school leavers of the future.

“Young people finishing their A-levels this summer can apply for the first ever medical degree apprenticeship next year.

“There are already hundreds of other apprenticeship schemes offering a route into the NHS, from pharmacist assistants, ambulance practitioners, through to HR schemes.”