Health Professions July 12, 2019
BMA urges Tory leadership hopefuls to address pension taxation

By News Feature - Accountable Care Journal

The British Medical Association (BMA) has written to Conservative leadership candidates Jeremy Hunt and Boris Johnson urging them to make reforms on the current pension taxation rules a priority to avoid patient care deteriorating further.

The letters were sent on the day that NHS performance figures revealed a staggering 70 per cent increase in patients waiting on trolleys to be seen compared to June last year, and the A&E four-hour target worse than the wintertime.

Though pension taxes are just one part of the wider issues informing these figures, the BMA points out that doctors having to reduce their hours or retire from the NHS early will only exacerbate poor levels of patient care and reduced staffing levels.

In letters to the two Conservative leadership candidates, the chair of the BMA council, Dr Chaand Nagpaul, warns that the BMA is “deeply concerned about significant reductions in capacity within the NHS” citing the “worrying evidence” that pension taxation is having on the NHS.

The letters reference a survey of consultants carried out by the BMA earlier in the year which reveals the extent of the workforce crisis emerging from the current pension taxation as, which reads: "Our survey of over 4,000 consultants, revealed that over 60 per cent intended to retire at or before the age of 60, with more than half citing the pensions taxation issues as the reason for this.

"GP’s are similarly impacted resulting in a fall in whole time equivalent GP numbers at a time when the government has committed to recruit 5000 new GPs. This worrying trend is coupled with a subsequent increase in patient waiting times for GP appointments."

Read the letters: 

Dear Jeremy Hunt

Dear Boris Johnson