This site is intended for health professionals only

PM's health plans "not properly thought through"

GPs are worried that the government's national health screening plans have not been properly thought out.

The British Medical Association (BMA) has said that focusing on prevention is a positive move and should be “congratulated” but Gordon's Brown's plans have not been considered carefully.

Dr Laurence Buckman, chairman of the BMA's GPs Committee said: “Patients will clearly benefit from earlier detection of disease and GPs have been participating in national programmes to screen patients for illnesses such as diabetes and kidney disease for many years.

“However, there is currently a shortage of staff to carry out diagnostic scans, so an expanded screening programme would also require a significant expansion of both personnel and scanning equipment.”

Dr Buckman adds that he does not recommend the private sector be used to help deliver the screening programme.

He adds: “If the government relies on the private sector to deliver its new screening programme, the real winners will be the shareholders.”

BMA