Difficulty implementing MDT in rural areas and remote areas

Difficulty implementing MDT in rural areas and remote areas

RCGP Scotland welcomes the opportunity to respond to this consultation. As the membership body for general practitioners in Scotland, we exist to promote and maintain the highest standards of patient care. The ongoing development and implementation of the Multi-Disciplinary Team (MDT) has been as aspect of primary care modernisation which has been broadly welcomed within general practice in Scotland. Making use of the broad range of health professionals who constitute MDTs can help relieve the workload pressures on GPs. An effectively resourced MDT also enables patients to access appropriate care in an environment capable of providing it through better use of professionals located within the general practice team- for example as first contact physiotherapists, pharmacists, mental health workers. However, the MDT structures that can work well in urban centres cannot be deployed in sparsely populated areas. Recruitment and staffing of MDTs within rural and remote practices continues to pose significant challenges, and this has led some rural and remote GPs to feel their practices and patients face a significant disadvantage when compared to their urban counterparts. As one of the intended benefits of the MDT is relief of workforce pressure upon GPs, this has been a frustrating situation for these practices. An inquiry into how the MDT model is serving rural and remote practices would be welcome, with an additional focus on ways to recruit more MDT members and how to best draw upon the resources at hand to treat patients.


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