Patient care is being compromised by GPs' lack of assessment time, according to research by Aviva UK Health.
Doctors also admitted that they would like double the time typically allowed to see each patient.
Over half of the 200 GPs questioned (57%) in the provider's Health of the Workplace study say they have less time to see their patients than five years ago, with 50% saying a lack of time with their patients definitely affects their ability to do the job.
A further 43% say it makes it harder for them to come to an accurate diagnosis, however, the remaining 7% feel a lack of time with a patient does not affect their ability to do their job.
While nine in ten GPs (89%) feel that ideally they'd take up to 20 minutes to see each patient, current practice is to schedule doctors' appointments for 10 minutes each.
It appears that consumers are unhappy with the situation as well, as additional research conducted by Aviva showed nearly two-thirds (63%) thought NHS appointments were always rushed.
The research also reveals that the internet is playing an increasingly important role for GPs, with 96% of the GPs questioned for the study claiming to access web search engines on a daily basis for their work and 85% admitting to using these online resources as an aid to diagnosis.
Dr. Hugh Laing, consultant for Health of the Workplace and a practising GP, believes the results show GPs are not able to provide the best care for their patients.
"Our research shows that GPs are over stretched and this can affect the quality of support they are able to offer their patients," he says.
"Web based technology has revolutionised the way we all work and fast access to high quality information can be an invaluable support for patients and professionals but ultimately there is no substitute for a thorough assessment by a qualified GP and from our research this is clearly not happening in many cases.
"As such we urge the new coalition Government to support and work with GPs to ensure delivery of the right care for patients.
"While the Government has outlined its health policies focusing on improving access to GPs and offering a wider choice of doctors, both patients and GPs are clearly demanding a better GP experience, and access times and choice are just one piece of this jigsaw," he adds.
Four-year ‘stealth tax raid’
Five levels of cover
Following Paterson Inquiry
Deaths total 1,116
'Get your running shoes on'