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RCGP consults on 10 year plan for the future of general practice

The RCGP has launched a consultation on its vision for the future of general practice, including ambitions for more GPs, longer training and increased consultation times; as part of a new ten year plan to improve patient care and put general practice at the heart of the NHS transformation.

Responses to the College's largest ever consultation- called ‘General Practice 2022'- will inform a newly-gathered ‘compendium of evidence' demonstrating how general practice should be the driving force behind health service changes.

Once finalised, this will form the basis of the College's blueprint for patient care, as well as the requirements and responsibilities necessary to deliver it.

The consultation, which runs from 14 September until 8 October this year, examines the current role of GPs in the UK, and general practice as a driver of improved health outcomes, through disease prevention, rapid diagnosis and their role in providing access to specialist care.

It also looks at future challenges for GPs including ageing populations, increased volume and complexity of patient care, financial constraints, structural changes and health inequalities as well as discussing new models of delivering care, developing new skills and taking on new roles.

Three main areas for action are set out: increasing the number of new GPs by promoting general practice as a career amongst medical students, retaining the existing workforce by increasing levels of support and resources and extending postgraduate training from three to four years to advance the profession's development.

Commenting on the launch of the consultation, RCGP chair professor Clare Gerada said: ‘We are keen to receive views from as many people as possible - from GPs working across the UK and other health professionals to politicians in all four governments; from managers in the NHS, to those working in the voluntary and social care sector; and from patients and the wider public. 

‘We must look ahead to enable us to deliver the care and services that our patients will need and expect over the next few years. The stakes are too high not to get this right.'