MP claims GPs treat working class and middle class patients differently

A veteran Labour MP has claimed that GPs treat working class and middle class patients differently.

Barry Sheerman, who has represented Huddersfield since 1979, asked ministers what was “going on with GPs and poorer people” after claiming working class patients are routinely given “the wrong drugs”.

As health minister Jackie Doyle-Price responded to his question a shout of “they’re killing people” could be heard in the Commons — to which Ms Doyle-Price said “that is not the debate I want to see about the NHS”.

Mr Sheerman, speaking during health questions in the Commons, said: “The minister and ministerial team know that many working class people haven’t got very good access to GPs and GPs actually treat them differently than more middle class people.

“Look at atrial fibrillation and the number of people from poorer backgrounds wrongly diagnosed.

“If they are diagnosed with an irregular heartbeat or pulse they are given the wrong drugs, many ordinary people in this country.

“All these wonderful GPs prescribing aspirin will do no good at all, what’s going on with GPs and poorer people?”

Ms Doyle-Price responded: “I think our NHS is full of people doing their best to deliver the best possible care for all their patients.

“I do think it’s important when faced with a patient, GPs and any health practitioners do consider the holistic needs of all their patients.”