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One in four A&E visits are 'down to lack of GP access'

More than a quarter of visits made to accident and emergency departments in England are made by people who cannot get an appointment with their GP, research has found.

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GPs 'heaving under strain of rocketing patient demand'

GPs are "heaving under the strain of rocketing patient demand" as the NHS tries to care for an ageing and growing population, despite funding cuts.

Dr Maureen Baker, chairwoman of the Royal College of GPs, said:

Every patient should be able to see their family doctor when they need to, and GPs want to provide the best possible access and high-quality care for all their patients.

But this research is further evidence of the crisis in general practice, with family doctors heaving under the strain of rocketing patient demand, due to a growing and ageing population, and plummeting investment.

More than 90% of patient contacts in the NHS are dealt with in general practice - for only 8.39% of the budget.

– Dr Maureen Baker

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