The Home Office is in discussion with NHS Digital over a new agreement to allow it to access GP patient data, after NHS Digital pulled out of the previous deal.
Capita will shortly re-start the process of GP list cleansing to remove so-called 'ghost patients', it has been revealed.
Around 3,000 UK doctors face having their qualifications reviewed after it emerged a New Zealander practised in the UK for 23 years with fake medical credentials.
GP representatives will raise concerns about a ‘one size fits all’ approach in the new Scottish contract at the upcoming annual local medical committee conference.
A shortage of GPs has forced a practice in Dorset to close after it was unable to find replacements for retiring doctors.
She said: "Antibiotics are excellent, vital drugs when used appropriately - and for many bacterial infections there is often no alternative treatment available.
"GPs are already doing great work to reduce antibiotics prescribing and will only recommend them if we genuinely believe they will help the patient sitting in front of us. But antimicrobial resistance is a society-wide issue, and GPs cannot be held responsible for tackling it on their own.
"We need to get to a stage where antibiotics are not seen by patients as a 'catch all' for every illness. Sore throats, for example, are usually caused by viral infections that antibiotics will not help – they are also self-limiting and will get better on their own, with symptoms that can be relieved with paracetamol and other over the counter remedies.
"It's crucial we continue to get this message out, which is why we're pleased to support all campaigns to reduce inappropriate use of antibiotics to make sure we can carry on delivering safe, effective care to our patients both now and in the future."
NHS Hammersmith and Fulham CCG has lifted its clinical restrictions for which patients Babylon's GP at Hand app should sign up.
Babylon's GP at Hand app is expected to attract even more patients over the upcoming weeks, as the company has launched a new advertising campaigning.
She said: "Given the intense pressures currently facing our NHS, it frankly comes as little surprise to hear that an impending workforce shortfall will put the forthcoming NHS long-term plan at risk, if it is not comprehensively and effectively addressed from the outset.
"Workforce shortages are, as this report shows, being felt right across the NHS – and general practice is no different. Workload in our profession has escalated over the last few years in both volume and complexity, but our workforce is actually falling. We are currently short of at least 6,000 GPs in England, and if this isn't addressed, it is our patients who will ultimately bear the brunt by not being able to see their GP when they need to.
"GPs and our teams make the vast majority of NHS patient contacts and in doing so we alleviate pressures from other areas of the NHS, where care is more expensive. The long-term plan – underpinned by a coherent, properly-funded workforce strategy - must recognise and address the adverse impact workforce pressures are having on our profession and the care we are able to deliver to our patients in the community.
"GP trainee numbers are at an all-time high, but it takes 10 years to train a family doctor from entering medical school and efforts to bolster our workforce for today's patients are falling short of expected targets, leading to ever-increasing waiting times, burnt out GPs, and quality of care being put under threat.
"As well recruiting more doctors, we also need schemes to reduce the unnecessary and bureaucratic workload GPs are currently facing, and retain experienced GPs in the profession, not only for the benefit of our patients, but to also help teach and nurture the next generation of general practitioners.
"We need to see NHS England's GP Forward View, which promises an extra £2.4bn a year and 5,000 more GPs, delivered in full, as well as our additional ask of another £2.5bn a year as part of the forthcoming NHS long-term plan, to be delivered as soon as possible, to alleviate pressure elsewhere in the health service and fundamentally, keep our patients safe."
NHS England has updated its protocol on locum cover reimbursements for GP performers who are returning from sick leave on a phased basis.
NHS workforce shortages are so dire that there is a risk some of the £20.5bn extra funding pledged may go unspent, expects have warned.
The NHS could claim back over half a billion pounds from Pfizer - following a long-running controversy that saw GPs having to switch patients between branded and generic pregabalin - after the Supreme Court ruled that the drug company’s patent for Lyrica (pregabalin) is invalid.
"This error has put patients at risk, and it will undoubtedly cause women more anxiety. It is vital everything is done as a matter of urgency to rectify the situation, and ensure all affected women are informed – particularly those who have not received their test results.
"We urge women not to panic and to await further information - we understand that NHS England are already working to contact anyone who has been affected. Our GP members will also be extremely concerned and need to be comprehensively informed as to how to advise patients for the best.
"This is the second blunder of its kind this year, and we all need answers about why this has happened and assurance that it will not happen again.
"We will be asking NHS England to urgently and seriously review its contract with Capita – this is the latest in a long line of serious errors made by the company, and it is clear to us that they have not properly understood the scope or complexity of the work they have bid to do to support primary care."
Some 40,000 patients could lose their GP as several practices are set to close across the UK, mainly as a result of recruitment issues.
The Welsh Assembly public accounts committee has published a stinging rebuke of efforts to modernise NHS IT systems in the country.
84% of GPs surveyed expressed concern that increased workload will negatively affect their ability to deliver patient care this winter.
This figure is unsurprising given that 96% of GPs said their workload increased in winter months, with 94% reporting that increasing numbers of patients are seeing their GP every winter.
RCGP Wales has said the findings demonstrate "a pressing need to boost the GP workforce", re-iterating calls for an increase in the number of GP training places in Wales. Numbers of training places in Wales are significantly behind the rest of the UK.
The College has also called for patients to have more information about the variety of options available to them in primary care. The RCGP Wales survey showed that only 51% of GPs felt there is enough information available to patients about what they should do if they feel unwell during the winter.
On Tuesday afternoon the Cabinet Secretary for Health and Social Services will be making a statement on 'Winter Delivery Planning' in the Welsh Assembly.
Dr Peter Saul, Joint Chair of Royal College of General Practitioners Wales, said:
"We already have a stretched GP workforce, having to work incredibly hard to try and meet patient demand through the year, so it is to be expected that GPs are concerned about what the winter months will mean for patient care.
"These results are a stark reminder of the pressing need to boost the GP workforce. The number of GP training places per patient is well below the rest of the United Kingdom, meaning there aren't enough GPs coming into the workforce. The Welsh NHS needs to build a strong and resilient NHS workforce, including through the recruitment of GPs and other primary care professionals.
"This is not going to happen in time for this winter. It will likely be a trying time, both for those working in the NHS and patients trying to access services. We would strongly encourage patients to consider the variety of options available to them in primary care, making appropriate use of valuable NHS resources.
"The recent 'Choose Well' relaunch highlighted the effective role pharmacists can play in primary care. There are a number of other primary care healthcare professionals who can help patients and these all should be considered. NHS Direct Wales can be a valuable source of information, and we also need to see common sense approaches like at-risk groups receiving their flu vaccine."
The Welsh Government needs to commit to the independent contractor GP model and invest accordingly, the LMCs conference has said.
GPs in Scotland are being encouraged to apply for an interest-free secured premises loan as a scheme outlined in the new GP contract is launched.
Some GP practices have been left with ‘extraordinarily high numbers of documents to check’ following errors with the Docman system.
She said: "Prescribing is a core skill for GPs, and we are highly-trained to make decisions about a patient's care based on their individual needs, in their best interests, and in conversation with them.
"For many patients with diabetes, medication is essential to help them manage their condition and live a good quality of life.
"But we also know that making straightforward lifestyle changes, for example, eating a healthy and balanced diet, losing weight and exercising more can prevent, delay, or sometimes even reverse Type 2 diabetes.
"GPs and our teams will have these often quite sensitive conversations with our patients, but our profession is currently operating under intense resource pressures and there is a limit to what we can realistically do within the constraints of the standard 10-minute consultation – and offering longer appointments means offering fewer appointments at a time when patients are already waiting too long to see their GP.
"Ultimately, we need to see the delivery of NHS England's GP Forward View, which promises an extra £2.4bn for general practice and 5,000 more GPs, as well as our additional ask of £2.5bn extra a year as part of the forthcoming NHS long-term plan, to ensure we can give more time to all of our patients, including those with diabetes."