Commenting on NHS England's Guidance and standard operating procedures Dr Graham Jackson, senior clinical adviser at the NHS Confederation, which represents primary care networks and GP federations as well as NHS trusts, clinical commissioning groups and integrated care systems in England, said:
“We are glad to see recognition from NHS England that primary care has been seeing patients face to face throughout the pandemic and that these decisions should continue to be based on what is clinically appropriate for the patient alongside their personal preference.
“Our members have always fully appreciated the value of offering face to face appointments and they must be supported to deliver care in way that meets the needs of their patients as well as their staff. This includes supporting those waiting for hospital treatment, alongside managing increased demand for mental health services and playing an essential role in the largest vaccination programme the UK has ever seen.
“The strength of feeling about this issue in the last week shows how much pressure primary care is under right now and for this to be recognised in the national discourse but it is not, and has never been about, about a single individual. We are keen to continue to work closely with colleagues at NHS England and maintain a constructive dialogue in tackling these important issues.”