GPs in the UK are more likely to receive extra financial incentives than those from a list of 10 other developed countries, according to a report.

In a poll of more than 10,000 primary care doctors from 11 countries, 89 per cent of British respondents reported they received or had the potential to receive extra financial support.

These were based on factors such as achieving targets (84 per cent), managing patients with chronic disease (82 per cent) and patient satisfaction (49 per cent).

New Zealand was next with a figure of 80 per cent overall. At the bottom of the scale, 10 per cent of Swedish doctors reported that they could receive incentives.

The findings emerged in a survey by US think tank the Commonwealth Fund, published in Health Affairs. It included a sample of 1,062 doctors working in the UK, the majority in England.

The report revealed that most practices have after-hours arrangements - 89 per cent of UK GPs reported these were in place in some form.

It was the joint second highest figure in the study, behind Holland.

More than one in five NHS doctors (22 per cent) said patients often had a long wait to see a specialist, although this was the lowest proportion of the countries polled.

The authors said although it was difficult to generalise across the UK, the practices that responded “stand out throughout the survey for information capacity, a systemic approach to chronic care and incentives to support improved performance”, adding that recent studies indicated that NHS reforms had “improved outcomes”.

The Department of Health hailed the study, claiming it showed the NHS had one of the best primary healthcare systems in the world.