Emigration of GPs set to dominate conference in Co Sligo

More than 1,000 general practitioners emigrated to the UK over four years

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File photo of a doctor checking a patient's blood pressure | Image: Anthony Devlin / PA Wire/Press Association Images

Members of the Irish Medical Organisation (IMO) are gathering in Sligo today for their AGM.

The issue of GPs emigrating is expected to top the agenda, as figures suggest they are currently leaving Ireland at rate of one per day.

More than 1,000 general practitioners emigrated to the UK alone between 2009 and 2013.

The IMO says the incoming government is facing an "unprecedented crisis" in public health, which needs immediate investment.

IMO President Dr Ray Walley says the current contract and approach to General Practice is out of date.

"The contract that is in existence for General Practice is 40 years old, it does not address the modern needs of General Practice" he told Newstalk Breakfast.

"The major thing we've got going down the line is an aging population with an increased chronic care need".

"Ad all of the international studies for the last 30 or 40 years indicate the best place to deal with that is in General Practice community care - and we're not funding that" he added.