British Medical Association defends huge increase in GP salaries

The British Medical Association (BMA) has defended increases in GPs’ earnings of 23% in a single year.

New figures published by the Information Centre for Health and Social Care (ICHSC) showed that family doctors earned an average of £100,170 during the first full year of the new GP contract.

After expenses, their salaries went up 22.8% in 2004-05 compared with the previous year.

Original figures issued by the ICHSC in November included the employers’ superannuation contribution (on average £6,234 per GP), which has been omitted in the latest figures.

Dr Hamish Meldrum, chairman of the BMA’s GPs committee said: “The reason GP pay went up was because the government insisted on linking earnings to the quality of patient services provided by family doctors.

“GPs and their practices performed exceptionally well and the high-quality scores they achieved brought greater resources into the practices. It was money well and truly earned and GPs now feel they are being punished for their success in delivering high-quality care to their patients,” Meldrum said.

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