SDLP Foyle MLA Mark H Durkan has warned that GP provision in rural areas is now at breaking point.
Mr. Durkan said that devolved institutions will be crucial to addressing the growing concerns over pressures on the health service.
The SDLP health spokesperson was speaking after meeting with the Royal College of GPs regarding health service challenges.
He said: “In spite of additional resource committed to the Health Service by the Secretary of State, it’s clear that acute pressures are impacting on frontline staff and patient outcomes.
“Advancing the health service transformation plan is critical, particularly in rural communities where GP provision is stretched to breaking point.
“Meeting with the Royal College of GPs is part of ongoing engagement the SDLP is having with health service professionals to hear their concerns and act.
“We need devolved institutions to affect that positive change.”
RCGPNI chair, Dr Grainne Doran said: “We need to see our political leaders coming together to put patients first. While political deadlock continues, patients will be the ones who suffer most. Health and social care transformation must be a top priority for us all.
“There is urgent work to be done to address the challenges right across our health service, and solving the problems in general practice is at the heart of this.”