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At the heart of general practice since 1960

GP training set for major overhaul

GPs with special interests will have to undergo a system

of performance management checks and accreditation by the RCGP to 'kite-mark' their work.

The Department of Health has asked the college to develop precise criteria to define GPwSIs, who have until now operated on a system of voluntary competencies.

Dr Mayur Lakhani, RCGP chair, said: 'GPwSIs want this. They want to be able to say "this is why I'm a GPwSI".'

Dr Neil Crowley, a GPwSI in dermatology in west London, said he had had to select training schemes he believed had 'street cred' and that an accreditation pathway would make being a GPwSI more attractive. He said: 'You can't just have anyone setting up ­ they need proven extra training. It's all a bit fluid at the moment ­ I'm glad they're getting on with it.'

The Government is expected to fund the RCGP scheme for at least the first year.

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