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Top GP says loneliness ‘as bad for health as long term illness’

Being lonely can be as bad for someone’s health as having a long-term illness such as diabetes or high blood pressure, the leader of Britain’s GPs will warn on Thursday.

Patients who visit their family doctor because they are suffering from loneliness and want some human contact are adding to the pressures the NHS is under, Dr Helen Stokes-Lampard will tell the Royal College of General Practitioners (RCGP).

But she will also urge GPs to make the time to see such patients, so that they have someone to talk to, despite being overworked because of the growing demands on their schedules.

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