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'Dumbing down' of GP training

GP training risks being 'dumbed down' because of continued cuts in deanery budgets, GP educationalists are warning.

The Association of Course Organisers last week condemned the 'sudden withdrawal' of plans in Modernising Medical Careers for trainees to spend 18 months in general practice.

The policy had been explicitly stated as recently as May by the Council of General Practice Education Directors at the association's annual conference.

But deaneries have been forced to drop the plan because the Department of Health has refused to invest more in GP training.

Dr Roger Burns, chair of the association, said: 'This is a prime example of a perverse incentive distorting the ultimate objective we all agree on.'

He added: 'The training issues are being fudged and the new world is being pushed forward with indecent haste and inadequate funding, and without the hearts and minds of the educators.'

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