You can use your existing Medical Independent, MediLearning or PharmacistCPD account to log in. is Ireland's only investigative medical news website for doctors, healthcare professionals and anyone with an interest in health issues.

Established in 2010, along with its sister publication The Medical Independent, our stated aim is to investigate and analyse the major issues affecting healthcare and the medical profession in Ireland. The Medical Independent has won a number of awards for its investigative journalism, and its stories are frequently picked up by national digital, broadcast and print media. The Medical Independent is published by GreenCross Publishing.

Address: Top Floor, 111 Rathmines Road Lr, Dublin 6

Tel: 353 (01) 441 0024

GreenCross Publishing is owned by Graham Cooke.

The benefits of registering: only registered users:
  • receive the ecCopy two days prior to the printed edition.
  • have automatic access to our free CPD sites.
  • can partake in our online MCQs.
  • can enter our online sports quiz.

Sign up now for ease of access to The Medical Independent, Ireland’s most frequently published medical newspaper, delivering award-winning news and investigative reporting.

Download the new Mindo app for both IOS & Android.

  • Get notified when a story goes live
  • Access Premium Content
  • Read Offline
[the_ad_placement id="main-ldb-public"]
[the_ad_placement id="main-ldb-mobile-public"]

You are reading 1 of 2 free-access articles allowed for 30 days

Challenge of replacing older GPs highlighted in workload study

By Dermot - 02nd Jun 2020 | 6 views

GPs in Ireland work an average of 10 hours per day excluding out of hours activity and break times, according to a new study on GP workload.

Published today (2 June) in the British Journal of General Practice (BJGP), the novel study monitored GP clinical and non-clinical workload via a bespoke mobile application (app).

The study is the first of its kind to capture real time GP activity via an app, in this case the US “Time Doctor” app.

Around 9,000 hours of activity were self-recorded by 123 GPs over a six-week period between January 2019 and March 2019, with rural, urban, group practice and single-handed GPs among those studied.

Some 64 per cent of GP daily time was spent in clinical consultation, with the remainder spent on non-consultation activities including paperwork, telephone calls and administrative work.

GPs in the study saw on average of 25 patients per day, with older and more senior GPs working longer hours compared to their junior colleagues.

About 60 per cent of GP partners recorded a work day finishing time after 6pm while 10 per cent of rural GPs finished work after 10pm.

Roscommon GP Dr Brendan Crosbie, leady author, told the Medical Independent (MI) the study revealed that the average consultation time was 15 minutes, in line RCGP guidelines. 

The data, he added, showed the huge workload undertaken by GPs, with many beginning work before 9am, and others starting before 8am and 7am in some cases.

The study authors warn that the current workload “shouldered by older GPs” will need to be distributed among younger GPs and others within practice teams in order to meet the needs of patients in the future.

“This study highlights the significant number of hours being worked by GPs across all demographics in the RoI, in particular by older GPs and those in more senior roles. The pattern of longer session lengths and later finishing times observed among the ≥55-year-old age category highlights the challenge of replacing this cohort of GPs approaching retirement age,” the authors concluded.

“This is of even greater concern given that approximately one-third of GPs in the RoI are over 55 years old.

“Irish general practice is partly funded by a fee-per-service remuneration system; however, one-third of total time recorded in the current study was spent on non- consultation activities. This highlights the significant unseen and often unappreciated workload burden that likely exists in every GP system, regardless of funding mechanism.”

Leave a Reply

[the_ad_placement id="main-ldb-public-2"]
[the_ad_placement id="main-ldb-mobile-public-2"]
Latest Issue
The Medical Independent – 24 June 2021

You need to be logged in to access this content. Please login or sign up using the links below.

[the_ad_placement id="main-mpu-public"]
Most Read
[the_ad_placement id="main-ldb-public-2"]
[the_ad_placement id="main-ldb-mobile-public-2"]