More visits to GPs in 2013

The Federal Sickness and Invalidity Security Office Riziv reports that 440,000 more visits were made to general practitioners last year than was the case in 2012. A total of 33 million visits were made to general practitioners during last year. This equates to 90,000 visits a day. Speaking in an interview with the dailies ‘Het Belang van Limburg’ and ‘Gazet van Antwerpen’ virologist and general practitioner Marc Van Ranst said that “The situation has become untenable”.

The increase in the number of visits to the doctor’s in 2013 came about as a result of last year’s flu epidemic, the ageing population and the economic crisis.

Herman Moeremans of the Flemish General Practioner’s Syndicate told the papers that "The success of general practice is linked to the relationship of trust that can be built up between doctor and patient.”
"However, as result of high number of consultations, the risk is real that we will have less time to spend on each patient”, Mr Moermans added.

The increase in the number of visits to GPs also has cost implications for the Federal Sickness and Invalidity Security Office Riziv.

Riziv’s Marc Van Ranst calls on the next Federal Government look closely at which aspects of health care can be made more efficient. “For years now, everyone has been in agreement that things can’t go on like this, but no one has really done anything about it.”