GP numbers in first sustained drop for 50 years

The pressures on GPs are being looked at by the BBC as part of a special day of coverage, including a Panorama investigation. Dr Helen Stokes-Lampard, president of the Royal College of GPs, said: “General practice cannot be allowed to fail. It is an absolute cornerstone of the NHS.” NHS bosses maintain that steps are being taken to improve access, with more GPs being trained and extra support staff recruited to work alongside them. Where not to live if you need a GP Have waits for GP appointments got longer? NHS ‘no chance of training enough staff’ Scotland has more GPs than rest of the UK GP numbers on their way down Dr Carmel Boyham Irvine has worked at the …

The Latest: South African opposition leader votes in Soweto

The leader of South Africa’s main opposition party has cast his ballot in Dobsonville, a part of Soweto, Johannesburg’s largest black township. He was one of the first voters at the Dobsonville polling station. Democratic Alliance leader Mmusi Maimane has vigorously campaigned against the corruption scandals that have tarnished the ruling African National Congress party. But black support for Maimane’s party is limited because it is widely perceived as being run by whites. The African National Congress, the party of Nelson Mandela that has been in power since 1994, is likely to win a majority in Wednesday’s poll but it will face a difficult challenge to do as well as five years ago. ___ 7 a.m. South Africans have started …