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RCGP chair: ‘Blatant bigotry’ against general practice in medical schools

Medical schools must stop their ‘blatant bigotry’ against general practice which is putting potential GP trainees off the profession, the chair of the RCGP has said.

Professor Maureen Baker said medical schools were guilty of ‘rank discrimination’, with continuous examples of tutors bad-mouthing general practice, and called on their leaders to take action to prevent it happening.

Source: Maureen Baker

Speaking at the RCGP’s annual conference in Glasgow, Professor Baker said: ’We need to tackle the rank discrimination that is displayed against general practice in some medical schools.’

She continued: ’It should be unbelievable but barely a week goes by where I don’t hear about yet another example of a medical tutor at some medical school or another saying something outrageous about general practice, like, ”the bad news is that 40% of you will be GPs” or that ”general practice deals with a parade of trivia and is a second class form of medicine”.

’This blatant bigotry against general practice has to stop. We should have a zero tolerance policy towards such shocking outdated and antiquated attitudes.’

Professor Baker added that the college was ’now working with the medical schools council to tackle this unfairness’ and she called upon ’every individual medical school to take action on your own patch’.

The RCGP chair said it was critical to make general practice more attractive to trainees as well as existing GPs - and that the Government’s drive for seven-day working was ’a recipe for disaster’ that will ’make it virtually impossible to recruit and retain GPs, in direct contradiction to the Government’s stated aim of increasing the GP workforce by 5,000 by 2020’.

And she said the college remained ’very concerned about the possibility of GP trainees being financially disadvantaged as part of the ongoing discussions about the junior doctors’ contract’.

Professor Baker said: ’I’ve written to Jeremy Hunt twice on this issue to call on the Government to clarify that GP trainees will not lose out - particularly given the impact this would have on recruitment. And the college has also launched a petition which so far in just over a week has garnered more than 4,000 signatures.

’We must continue to value and support young doctors as the future of general practice and of medicine in the 21st Century.’

Readers' comments (21)

  • Never fear; said tutor will get to a certain age when he/she will see a Dr who deals with, oh dear -- just trivia.

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  • RCGP is a major part of the problem, from the ghastly e-portfolio and ludicrously expensive exams, to volunteering us for any social problem that catches the attention of the good-idea fairy. Idiots.

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  • forget what the medical schools are saying - its what GPs are saying about their jobs that matter.

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  • A 50% pay rise will make GENERAL PRACTICE cool again .

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  • BIGOT: a person who is obstinately or intolerantly devoted to his or her own opinions and prejudices; especially : one who regards or treats the members of a group (as a racial or ethnic group) with hatred and intolerance.
    RCGP attitude to the belief that GP is a wonderland and RCGP towards medical school tutors?
    I love spin!

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  • It would say more to medical students if the RCGP would grow a pair and start standing up for it's members.

    GP trainees are treated as hospital service providers and are now facing a possible 30% pay cut through removal of the GP training supplement.

    The RCGP have protested more about sugary drinks than about this.

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  • They are not bad mouthing - just telling the truth and going with their conscience which Maureen Baker can't digest as membership is dwindling meaning less proftis for RCGP.

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  • Proper universities will protect their medical students by telling them the truth about General Practice. I also advise anyone who asks me to avoid GP like the plaque. No respect from anyone, being judged by everyone who qualifies to do so by having no idea about anything and to top it all, huge stress causing irreversible damage that no money could ever compensate for.

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  • "GP is about doing sick notes" about doing some English comprehension.

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  • Echoing multiple previous similar comments, but deterrence doesn't come from medical school - most don't make career choices until FY1/FY2, where the thought of 4 years of terrible service provision trainee jobs, combined with an arduous, meaningless portfolio, second-mortgage inducing exam costs and your daily email from Maureen Baker providing me with learning log entries as a study in delusional beliefs, it's all justifiably unappealing. If I paid 9K a year to a university, as current students do, I would have a serious issue with them providing inaccurate career advice (ie. do General Practice! It'll all be great! Enjoy signing skydiving waivers!)

    PS. Anon 10:44 - is avoid like the plaque the modern day, atherosclerotic equivalent to avoid like the plague? Had to double check it wasn't just Pulse's new font that made me misread.

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