The SNP has underfunded Scottish GPs by almost £660 million over the last four years compared to GP investment in NHS England, according to figures calculated by the Scottish Conservatives.
The figures highlight that if NHS Scotland had given the same proportion of expenditure to GP investment as NHS England in the last four years, Scottish GPs would have received £658m extra in real terms.
This revelation comes with the Scottish Conservatives calling for the SNP to ensure that all Barnett consequentials from tomorrow’s UK Budget are spent on health and social care, with 11% on GPs directly.
This also undermines SNP politician’s claims that funding pressures on local health boards and rural GP practices are nothing to do with the Scottish Government.
Dean Lockhart MSP said:
‘’The simple fact is that when General Practice works well, the rest of our NHS works well. GPs provide so many crucial services in the community, particularly in rural areas, that it is essential that they get the funding they need.
‘’But these figures show that the SNP are responsible for chronically underfunding general practice.
‘’It is no wonder that practices in my region, such as Aberfoyle and Buchlyvie Medical Practice, are struggling as GPs are unable to cope with the financial pressures.
‘’The SNP is about to receive £2bn from the UK Government; that record investment must be used to support GPs.
‘’If it is not, then the claims by SNP politicians that those concerned with general practice are simply ‘political game-playing’ will start to fall on deaf ears.’’