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Four-year doctor training urged

5th April 2012

The RCGP has said the period of time for GP training should be extended to four years.

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It is making a submission along those lines to the Medical Programme Board of Medical Education England (MEE) to see the 12-month increase in the current GP specialty training period to reflect growing demands on GPs and primary care as the main setting for an increasing amount of patient services.

It is also suggesting the minimum time spent in general practice placements would increase by a year on the current statutory minimum, to 24 months.

The general practice training programme in the UK is the short of 14 European countries and has not been changed in three decades, despite changes and challenges in general practice.

An RCGP spokesperson said: “The structural changes that the NHS is undergoing will demand much more of your average GP in terms of clinical, managerial and leadership skills. More and more patients will be treated outside of hospital, in their homes and communities.”

The RCGP had been invited to submit a case to the MEE on the extension of specific specialty training for general practice by the Department of Health.

The college said its recommendation was designed to ensure that GP training kept up with the demands of an increasingly challenging and complex environment.

The 2008 Tooke Report Aspiring to Excellence on the independent inquiry into modernising medical careers and in the 2012 NHS Future Forum report Education and Training – next stage, had recommended an extension of training to five years.

 

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