'Quality of patient care threatened' physicians tell PM

Members of the Council of the Royal College of Physicians (RCP) have today written to the prime minister, Theresa May MP, to set out their concerns about the capacity and resources needed to meet the demands on the NHS.

The letter was signed by RCP president Professor Jane Dacre and 49 members of Council, representing 33,000 doctors across 30 specialties as well as 750 physician associates.

The signatories are fully committed to the NHS and want to work with the government to build on the health service's achievements. However, they say in their letter that the increase in patient need is outpacing the resources available, that services are ‘too often paralysed by spiralling demand to transform and modernise’, hospitals are ‘over-full, with too few qualified staff’ and services are ‘struggling or failing to cope’, and there are ‘increasing reports of staff contemplating the sad decision to leave the NHS’.

The Council members say that ‘current investment levels are not sufficient to meet current or future patient needs’ and the immediate actions needed are 'the reinvigoration of social care services and urgent capital investment in infrastructure'.

For further information and to arrange interviews please contact Linda Cuthbertson, head of PR and public affairs: +44 (0)20 3075 1254 / +44 (0)7748 777919.

You can download the full letter below.

The letter is part of the RCP’s Mission: Health campaign and follows our 2016 report Underfunded, underdoctored, overstretched.

Notes to editors

Please note that signatories have signed in their capacity as RCP Council members and not in relation to their NHS trust.