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dinsdag 22 augustus 2017

RCGP: Patient safety paramount in drive to increase GP numbers

Patient safety paramount in drive to increase GP numbers

She said: "The College's number one priority is, and always will be, patient safety. General practice is under intense resource and workforce pressures, and we desperately need more family doctors practising in the UK, but not through the back door, and not at the expense of the trust and confidence patients have in their GP.

"We estimate that around 250 candidates could be eligible for Targeted GP Training according to these proposals. That is those who have passed their Workplace Based Assessment, but have failed either the Applied Knowledge Test or Clinical Skills Assessment the maximum number of times, between 2010-2016.

"Compared to the thousands more GPs we need in the workforce, this is a modest number and it is important that we do not generate false hope for these 'targeted' candidates, as these proposed new measures would not guarantee their success.

"The College is open to any proposal that intends to safely increase the number of GPs practising in UK general practice – and we have cooperated fully and positively with HEE and others throughout this consultation process. But important recommendations from the College, such as a set time frame for the proposals, are not outlined clearly enough in this report, and will need to be addressed. 

"The MRCGP assessment is a world-renowned, robust – and fair and lawful – exam that ensures GP trainees have all the skills necessary to go on to practise independently as a family doctors in all four nations of the UK, and in doing so, it keeps our patients safe.

"Making changes to the assessment process is something we are open to – indeed, we have commissioned our own independent review of the MRCGP, which is currently underway. But change should not be taken lightly – and must be in the context of patient safety and evidence, not meeting targets."

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RCGP welcomes international recruitment boost to ease GP shortages

"Workload in general practice is escalating – it has risen 16% over the last seven years – yet investment in our service has declined and we are desperately short of GPs and nurses. It is imperative that we do everything possible to address this, including recruiting more GPs, retaining existing ones, and making it easier for trained GPs to return to practice after a career break.

"We welcome any GP from the EU or further afield who wants to work in UK general practice – as long as they meet the rigorous standards set by the College and General Medical Council to ensure safe clinical practice - to contribute to delivering care to over 1m patients every day. Indeed, thousands of GPs from overseas already work alongside UK GPs, and we are incredibly grateful for their skills and expertise.

"NHS England's GP Forward View has always included introducing 500 appropriately trained and qualified GPs from overseas into our GP workforce – if NHS England are confident that there is appetite to extend this scheme further, then we welcome this aspiration and will do all we can to support them to recruit and safely welcome new GPs to the profession.

"We need the pledges in NHS England's GP Forward View, including £2.4bn extra a year for general practice and 5,000 more full-time equivalent GPs by 2020, delivered as a matter of urgency so that we can continue to keep our patients safe now and for years to come – we hope this scheme goes a long way to achieving this, and look forward to working with NHS England and others to make it a success."

 

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Encouraging upsurge in GP recruitment - but must not rest on our laurels, says RCGP
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