About this release

This release by Public Health Scotland provides information on the General Practitioner (GP) workforce contracted to work in Scottish practices in the years 2010 to 2020. It includes information about the number of GP practices and profile of patients registered.

Main points

As at 30 September 2020:

  • The number of GPs in Scotland was 5,134, a rise of 89 GPs compared to 2019.
Image caption Number (headcount) of General Practitioners in Scotland, 2010 to 2020
Number (headcount) of GPs in Scotland, 2010-2020 (as at 30 September)  A line graph showing the number of  GPs for each year between 2010 and 2020 broken down by gender. The number of all GPs has increased from 4,907 in 2010 to 5,134 in 2020.
  • Female GPs now make up 62% of GPs in Scotland.

As at 1 October 2020:

  • The number of patients registered with GP practices continues to rise slowly year on year and has increased by 4.8% since 2010 to 5,784,870.
  • The number of patients aged 65 years or over who are registered with GP practices has increased by 21% since 2010 to 1,069,010.
  • The number of GP practices in Scotland decreased by 9% from 1,019 in 2010 to 928 in 2020, reflecting a trend towards larger practices with more GPs serving a larger number of patients.


This publication presents data on the General Practitioner (GP) workforce contracted to work in Scottish practices in the years 2010 to 2020. Data is broken down at NHS Board and local authority level, by age, sex and designation (external website) (type of GP).

Further information

Find out more in the full report. The data from this publication – along with background information and glossary – is available to download from the data files section at the top of this page.

The next release of this publication will be December 2021.

General enquiries

If you have an enquiry relating to this publication, please email phs.generalpractice@phs.scot.

Media enquiries

If you have a media enquiry relating to this publication, please contact the Communications and Engagement team.

Requesting other formats and reporting issues

If you require publications or documents in other formats, please email phs.otherformats@phs.scot.

To report any issues with a publication, please email phs.generalpublications@phs.scot.

Older versions of this publication

Versions of this publication released before 16 March 2020 may be found on the Data and Intelligence, Health Protection Scotland or Improving Health websites.

Last updated: 21 March 2024
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