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Dr Morton’s recently conducted a study, reported on by the Guardian, investigating the cost of Jeremy Hunt’s promise of having GP surgeries open 7 days a week.
We used staffing, indemnity and overhead costs for a typical surgery with 8500 patients and arrived at a conservative estimate cost of approximately £500,000 per year for this surgery to be open at weekends.
This means that many surgeries will be reticent to adopt the Health Secretary’s ‘new deal’ as the costs could be more than they can sustain. The typical £57 cost per patient would most likely increase for a smaller surgery with less than 8,500 patients because larger surgeries have economies of scale. Based upon £57 per patient at weekends, the true cost to GP surgeries of such a deal could exceed £1 billion.
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