Nine-in-ten (90%) doctors responding to a new survey say workplace pressures have increased in the past two to three years.
The Medical Defence Union (MDU) study of 348 medics also found 40% warning that they were likely to retire or leave practice in the next five years and had reduced their hours to cope.
GPs who responded were more likely to say they planned to retire or leave practice in the next five years (48%) and had reduced their hours due to workplace pressures (53%) than consultant or hospital doctor colleagues (38% and 39% respectively).
Dr Caroline Fryar, MDU director of medical services, said the ‘twindemic’ of flu and Covid was putting doctors under huge pressure while long waiting lists gave them little opportunity to recover.
Doctors wanted to provide the best possible care but often felt overwhelmed by the many conflicting demands on their time. This was impacting on their relationship with patients.
The MDU said it welcomed Government commitment to publishing a workforce strategy this year, as these problems would not solve themselves.
Association of Anaesthetists president Dr Matt Davies said: ‘Urgent action is required to address the workforce shortages, workplace conditions and support to staff working in what has been described by many professional organisations as an “unacceptable” environment.’