The Royal College of GPs has reacted to claims by health minister Mike O’Brien that it wants to abolish practice boundaries.

Speaking at the organisation’s annual conference in Glasgow, RCGP chair Professor Steve Field said: “Let’s be clear, I do not support the abolition of practice lists or practice boundaries - there are a significant number of patients who want the continuity of care provided by GPs but can’t get it because technically their home is not where they spend most of their time.

“We said we’d work with them to find some solutions, but we do not support the abolition of practice boundaries.”

The speech came one day after Mike O’Brien told the conference the controversial plan enjoyed widespread support from GPs.

Professor Field also said GPs should take a more active role in deciding the future of the NHS, adding that government had to take additonal measures to curb spending on management consultants.

“What I want to get across is leadership, leadership, leadership. That’s the key for the next year. GPs need to stand up and assert ourselves as leaders. A strong primary care system saves money. It’s a scandal, the millions spent on management consultancy costs by the Department of Health.”