Speaking as an ordinary GP and a DCH examiner, I was pleased to read that the RCGP plans to increase GP paediatric training.
For too long our two colleges have failed to co-operate in this important clinical area. We have much to learn from each other about the care of children in primary care settings, and the agreed emphasis on paediatrics forming an important element in GP specialty training is long overdue.
I am continually impressed by the high standards of GPs and GP registrars who take the exam. Recently the exam has gone through significant modernisation, with elements looking at safe prescribing and communication skills blended with more traditional clinical components. There certainly has been no slackening in standards, and the pass rate for the clinical exam is impressive, at around 80% – reflecting high levels of competence in candidates.
Let’s hope that the profession can move to longer training, allowing opportunity for even more new GPs to gain such expertise in the management of children’s illness. And let’s hope, too, that there can be fruitful working between the two colleges.
From Dr Peter Saul,