Rishi Sunak laughs at GP joke as heckler says NHS is 'disintegrating'

Rishi Sunak has laughed at a joke about GPs after a doctor shouted at him over the state of the NHS.

The prime minister was speaking at a rally in Wiltshire on Friday when the woman - understood to be Dr Jane Lees-Millais - began questioning government policies that see patients being sent to other primary care staff, rather than GPs.

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A GP herself, Dr Millais claimed the NHS was "disintegrating", adding: "The country is not stupid. They know when lesser qualified people are being used to conduct consultations which are massively complex."

But when she was then heckled by a man shouting, "most GPs spend more time on holiday than in the surgery, love", Mr Sunak laughed.

The second heckler was heard again, adding: "You can't get an appointment, can you?"

Responding to the doctor, the prime minister highlighted how his father had been a GP and his mother had been a pharmacist, adding: "My parents dedicated themselves to primary care. I know a thing or two about it."

He said the government was "supporting" GPs, mentioning money being put into new digital telephones, before continuing: "We are also making it easier for people to see other primary care practitioners to get the treatments they need and that's where I will respectfully disagree with you.

"Because I do think it is right that people can now see their pharmacist to get medicines for several common ailments."

The incident comes after a difficult day for the prime minister, who is facing criticism from all sides over leaving D-Day commemorations in France early on Thursday in order to do a TV interview back in the UK.