GP surgeries in the NHS Tayside region are having to deal with 11% more patients after new figures revealed that five practices have been lost over the past ten years.
Mid-Scotland and Fife MSP, Murdo Fraser, has expressed his concern at the figures and believes that more patients will ultimately result in longer waiting lists.
The statistics from ISD show that NHS Tayside has lost five practices since 2008.
The figures have emerged after recent warnings from the Royal College of General Practitioners that Scotland could be short of more than 800 family doctors by 2021.
Additionally, practice lists sizes have increased, with the average practice size in Tayside increasing by 11% since 2008.
Murdo Fraser MSP said:
“Scotland is in the midst of a GP crisis and fewer practices combined with larger lists is clearly impacting patient care in the NHS Tayside region.
“An 11% increase in patients at each practice is significant and higher than neighbouring boards in Fife and Forth Valley.
“The lack of GP practices directly affects waiting times and forces people to Accident and Emergency which is not the most efficient means of treating minor ailments.
“GP surgeries are the first line of defence when it comes to preventing disease and we need ring-fenced funding to protect this service.
“After 11 years of mismanagement it’s quite clear the SNP cannot be trusted with our health service.”