“Doctors On The Cheap?”

“Doctors On The Cheap?”

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Is the NHS putting patients at risk by expanding the role of medical professionals who aren’t qualified as doctors?

Physician Associates have been around in the Health Service for a couple of decades now and there are plans to more than double their numbers in an attempt to plug gaps in the workforce.

They don’t have a medical degrees and while they must complete a two year training course, there are concerns that physician associates don’t meet the ‘gold standard’ of a qualified medic.

In one tragic case, Emily Chesterton died in 2022 when a physician associate at her GP surgeryin London misdiagnosed a fatal blood clot as first a sprain, then anxiety.

This week, MP’s have been discussing whether to bring Physician Associates and Anaesthetist Associates under the regulation of the General Medical Council.

Adrian Goldberg hears from Dr Matt Kneale, co chair of the Doctors Association, a lobbying group which describes itself as ‘the voice of frontline doctors’.

Produced in Birmingham by Adrian Goldberg.

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