The number of Scottish GPs is continuing to decrease, putting in question the Government’s ability to reach a target to boost the workforce.

data release by NHS Education for Scotland showed that the GP headcount, which excluded trainees, went from 4,514 last year to 4,474 this year, a decrease of 0.9%, with full-time equivalent GPs also going down 0.4% from 3,493.9 to 3,478.4 in 2023.

RCGP Scotland warned that this is happening at a time when the number of registered patients in Scotland has increased by 2.1% over the past two years and that Scotland’s population is continuing to age, with a 50% increase in over-60s projected by 2033.

CGP Scotland chair Dr Chris Provan said: ‘The data released lays bare the failure to adequately staff general practice in Scotland, and reflects the deeply challenging frontline environment in which GPs are currently working. 

‘At a time of rising demand, a growing and aging population, and the long tail of Covid-19, it is highly worrying that the number of GPs in Scotland is on an opposite trajectory.

‘The Scottish Government is not on track to meet its commitment of 800 new GPs by 2027, having added only 271 in the past six years.

‘On behalf of our members and patients alike, RCGP Scotland continues to call for Scottish Government to address the profound issues of workforce, workload and welfare within general practice.

Want to see more SNP fails? – Politics Matters

Sign up to receive our weekly newsletter and join the fightback against Scottish Nationalism.