Diane Abbott MP, Labour’s Shadow Secretary of State for Health, speaking in response to the reports that GPs could deregister inactive patients after five years, said:
“I am extremely worried this new policy is being driven by cost-cutting rather than patient needs.
“No-one thinks it’s a good idea to keep non-existent patients on GP lists. But I am extremely concerned there should be rigorous safeguards and a failsafe mechanism to ensure that vulnerable patients are not left at risk.
“These vulnerable patients of course include the elderly, but they also include many others, including those with mental health problems.
“We know that the priority of the Tory Government is not patient outcomes. Labour will always defend patients and defend the NHS.”