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Related Ancillary Staff Scheme

Volume 986: debated on Thursday 19 June 1980

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asked the Secretary of State for Social Services whether he is yet able to announce the outcome of discussions with the representatives of general practitioners on the related ancillary staff scheme.

I am glad to be able to announce that we have reached agreement with the representatives of general practitioners, the General Medical Services Committee, on an extension of the present scheme until 31 March 1982. Until now the scheme has applied only to dependent relatives of single handed general practitioners in rural areas but we have now agreed that, as from 1 October this year, it should include dependent relatives of any general practitioner where these relatives are qualified nurses and work in the practice, provided they meet the other conditions of the scheme. The operation of the scheme will be reviewed with the profession before March 1982.I recognise that this extension will still leave some wives or other relatives working in general practice outside the scope of the scheme. But it will enable, for the first time, specific financial recognition to be given to the particularly valuable contribution to general practice made by relatives who are qualified nurses.