Financial reward is the very last attraction for a training practice.
After the protected teaching time, time required for the trainer to prepare for teaching, portfolio and reports, and the daily need to supervise and debrief the trainees is factored in, there is no financial benefit whatsoever. The trainers’ grant does not even cover one session of the trainer.
We have three trainees and have been asked to accommodate more, but had to decline. We train because we believe in the future of general practice and it helps us recruit and retain doctors to areas like ours where it has been extremely difficult to attract new doctors. Clearly, people sitting in Whitehall do not deal with such areas.
We will certainly have to stop or cut down on training if we have to pay in addition to the training commitment.
On one hand, we face an unprecedented recruitment crisis; on the other, signals from London are not only demoralising but destroy the very fabric of our commitment to training.
The new plans will commercialise the trainee-trainer relationship, which will be very sad. We need to encourage more practices to commit to training, not penalise them.
With an already depleted and demoralised workforce, these plans will be the basis for the demise of general practice as we know it.
Dr Kamal Sidhu is a GP trainer in Blackhall, County Durham