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RCGP offers free membership for GP returners

The RCGP is offering a year’s full membership for free to UK qualified GPs with an MRCGP who opt to return to NHS general practice after working overseas or taking a career break of more than two years.

The offer will also be open to GPs who took an MRCGP-equivalent exam, thos who trained in the EU or those who hold a ’Certificate of Eligibility for GP Registration’.

The scheme aims to make it more attractive for GPs returning to the NHS through one of the of its overhauled ‘return to practice’ schemes.

The college says GP returners who register with the Induction and Refresher Scheme in England, Wales and Northern Ireland, or the GP Returner scheme in Scotland ‘will have free access to the many benefits and support’ provided through RCGP membership.

Improvements to the returners scheme were announced as part of NHS England’s GP Forward View, after Pulse revealed just one in 100 GPs had returned directly to unsupervised practice through the newly launched scheme, while others had been put off returning at all.

NHS England also announced its new targeted enhanced recruitment scheme, which offers funding and support to GP returners who will return to work in a practice that has been unable to recruit for 12 months.

RCGP chair Dr Maureen Baker said: ‘The I&R scheme has been streamlined and the bureaucracy and red tape involved has been significantly reduced. We have been carrying out similar work in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

‘There is still more to do but the updated schemes are vastly improved, and we hope that offering a year’s free college membership – with access to our many professional and developmental benefits – will be an added incentive to anyone thinking about returning to the profession.’