Letter: Health bosses 'vital for care'

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The Independent Online
Sir: It was with anxiety that I read the article ('Managers in family doctor practices rise by 41 per cent', 3 August) about the rise of 'grey suits' in primary care. I would never classify myself, nor our members, nor the type of work we do, as being of the 'grey suit' variety.

Dawn Primarolo's statement appears to be based on a simple misconception. Practice managers are not bureaucrats. They do not sit around pushing pens but play a vital role in the practical day-to-day running of a GP surgery - delivering and improving the quality of patient care.

The increase in numbers, though, means that to guarantee the highest level of patient care, managers need to be sufficiently qualified to handle the ever-increasing responsibilities they face. What Dawn Primarolo should really be arguing is what the Association of Managers in General Practice is championing - maintaining and furthering management standards in primary care. Without this it does not matter how many practice managers there are, nor what colour suits they wear, patient care will suffer.

Yours faithfully,


Chief Executive

Association of Managers in

General Practice

London, SW7

3 August