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Central Scotland MSP calls for the return of face-to-face GP appointments

Graham Simpson has called for the return of face-to-face GP services

The central Scotland MSP is calling on the SNP Government to set a target date for the return of more normal services at surgeries.

His call comes after the Scottish Conservatives led a debate in parliament urging SNP ministers to commit to outlining a plan for returning to such practices.

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However, the party’s motion was voted against by those in parliament.

He told Lanarkshire Live : “The refusal of the SNP-Green Government to back a swifter return to more normal, face-to-face GP appointments in Lanarkshire is extremely disappointing.

“The SNP cannot use COVID as an excuse. They were warned for years about how our GPs in Lanarkshire were overwhelmed and underfunded, but they failed to take any action.”

The MSP thanked GPs in Lanarkshire for going “above and beyond” during the pandemic but says they are completely overwhelmed.

That is also having a knock-on effect in other health services in Lanarkshire including ambulance wait times and A&E services.

Simpson says the SNP Government were warned for years about a lack of funding for GP services in Lanarkshire, but failed to take any action.

He added: ““Our GPs have gone above and beyond during the pandemic to support patients, but they are at breaking point.

“The SNP’s mismanagement of the health service over the last 14 years is failing GPs as they try to recover from the pandemic.

“By refusing to set this target date, health secretary Humza Yousaf is letting down patients in Lanarkshire

“His flimsy NHS recovery plan has provided no solutions to increase the capacity of GP services in Lanarkshire and fix the spiralling the NHS crisis.

“The demands on GPs are having a knock-on effect on ambulance wait times and A&E departments in Lanarkshire.

“As we head towards winter, these pressures will only worsen in Lanarkshire.

“I will be continuing to hold the SNP Government to account, and push for a return of more face-to-face appointments between patients and their GP.”

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