'Now is the time to consider a career in general practice'
RCGP chair Dr Maureen Baker wrote an open letter to trainee doctors saying that additional funding for general practice could be the beginning of ‘a bright future’
Dr Maureen Baker CBE DM FRCGP DRCOG DCH
Chair of Council
Now is the time to consider a career in general practice
I am writing to you to urge you to consider a career in general practice.
There is now a real push to put more resources into general practice and build up the GP workforce. As a result, the future of general practice is looking bright.
In its ground-breaking document, the Five Year Forward View, NHS England calls for a ‘new deal for primary care’, with investment being shifted from acute to primary and community services.
The Government recently demonstrated its support for the ‘new deal’ with the Chancellor promising in his autumn statement that there would be ‘a £1.2bn investment in GP services across the UK’.
With this increased backing for primary care, the expert generalist skills of GPs have never been more in demand. And, as care is shifted out of hospitals, GPs will increasingly lead the development of new integrated services for patients in their communities.
GP practices are part of the fabric of their local communities, and the relationship that family doctors build up with their patients remains a key reason why it is one of the most satisfying jobs in the world.
General practice is also one of the most challenging jobs in medicine, as GPs must have the knowledge, expertise and confidence to be able to deal with whatever comes through the consultation room door.
A career in general practice offers a great deal of flexibility. It allows you to fit the job around other major commitments, such as having a young family. It also gives you the chance to practise in the region of your choice and to decide whether to be wholly a generalist or to develop skills in a specific area as a GP with a special interest.
I hope that the prospect of working in general practice sounds exciting. If you have any unanswered questions about what a career in general practice might hold in store, please find more information at www.rcgp.org.uk or ask your LETB or deanery, who would be happy to direct you to someone with whom to talk directly.
Please do consider joining me in this fantastic profession.
Dr Maureen Baker
Chair of Council
Royal College of General Practitioners