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Increase in female GPs risks service "shortfall"

Experts warn that increasing numbers of female medical graduates could create a major shortfall in primary care provision.

British Medical Journal experts say that women are more likely to work part-time and less likely to work out of hours.

Brian McKinstry from the University of Edinburgh believes that the increase in female doctors may have partly influenced the recent abandonment of out of hours work by GPs in the UK.

In the absence of any profound change in society's view about who should be responsible for child care, he says practices should take a balanced approach to recruitment in the interests of equity.

But Jane Dancre from the University College London argues that we should focus on ensuring equality of opportunity instead of worrying about increasing female GP numbers.

She says that the feminisation of medicine should be welcomed as an opportunity to be creative with workforce planning.  

British Medical Journal