The chair of the RCGP has written to thousands of trainee doctors in England today urging them to consider a future in general practice because the future ‘is looking bright’.
The college says this is the first time it has resorted to direct mailing on such a large scale, and it has done so because of the acute need to address the chronic shortage of GPs that remains unsolved despite an unprecedented third round of GP recruitment this year.
In the letter, Dr Maureen Baker writes: ‘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.’
The letter adds: ‘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.
‘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… I hope that the prospect of working in general practice sounds exciting.’
Yesterday, Pulse reported that Health Education England intends to train hundreds more physician assistants as part of its £5bn Workforce Plan for England.
It follows GP training places in some areas of England being undersubscribed by as much as 40% this year.