FIRST REAL-TIME STUDY OF GP WORKLOAD REVEALS A 10-HOUR WORKING DAY (EXCLUDING BREAK TIME AND OUT OF HOURS ACTIVITY)
ONE THIRD OF GPs’ TIME SPENT ON NON-CLINICAL WORK
The first-ever national real-time study of GP workload reveals a picture of excessive workload including significant non-clinical responsibilities, with an average 10-hour day by many GPs excluding break time and out-of-hours commitments.
The study “A Real-Time Measurement of General Practice Workload in Ireland” is published today (02 June) in the British Journal of General Practice (BJGP) – here –
The study of real-time workload of 123 GPs between January and March 2019 reveals the increasing demand for GP services has led to escalating work demands.
Key findings were:
- The average working day was 9.9 hours excluding break time and out of hours activity.
- 64% of this was spent on face-to-face clinical consultation with patients.
- The remainder was spent on other activities, including paperwork, telephone calls and administrative work.
- GPs in the study saw an average of 25 patients per day (excluding telephone consultations).
- Older and more senior ranked GPs worked longer hours relative to their younger and more junior colleagues.
- 60% of GPs Partners recorded a finishing time after 6pm, 20% after 8pm and 10% of rural doctors recording finishing times after 10pm.
“This is the first study of its kind in which GPs self-recorded their workload activity in real-time over a six week period,” said lead author & Roscommon GP Dr Brendan Crosbie. “GP workload is an issue of increasing concern. Excessive workload is associated with increased rates of doctor “burnout” and is one of the most commonly cited reasons for Irish GP graduates to emigrate abroad.”
Dr Mary Favier, President of the ICGP, said: “We welcome this important study of GP workload which confirms what GPs on the ground already know and experience – we are working longer hours with increased non-clinical demands. Retention of GPs is a significant issue in Ireland and excessive workload is making it unattractive for many graduates and younger GPs . Demand for GP services in increasing but we need more GPs in order to meet that demand.”
ISSUED BY: Aileen O’Meara, Communications Consultant ICGP. Tel. 087 2239830 / Email: email@example.com
Dr Brendan Crosbie is available for interview. ENDS