The dispute within the medical profession over the appropriate income ratio between consultants and general practitioners in the early 1960s provided a focus for a number of the major problems besetting medical practice. The first was the structure of the British Medical Association and its related bodies, subjected to the stress of having to issue a statement on medical incomes. The old status differences between general practitioners and con­ sultants were resurrected, and the potential for conflict in the professional structure was realized. A second primary cause for concern to general practitioners was the future of the capitation system and the need to unravel the increased complexities of payment from the "central pool." Third, and closely interwoven with discontent over the capitation system, was the demand of GPs for a positive commitment as to their future role in a spe­ cialized medical system. Finally, there was the fundamental question of the appropriate balance of manpower between consultant and general practice in the National Health Service of the future.