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Recruitment drive begins to attract GPs

Campaign aimed at young doctors

Jo Carlowe

Friday, 25 September 2015

This week sees the launch of a recruitment drive to encourage more young doctors to become GPs.

Four of the country’s leading health bodies have joined forces to launch the new campaign, which forms one strand of the 10 point action plan ‘Building the Workforce – the New Deal for General Practice,’ published in January 2015.

Spearheaded by Health Education England (HEE), ‘There’s nothing general about general practice’ has the backing of the Royal College of General Practitioners (RCGP), the British Medical Association (BMA) and NHS England. 

It will run across social media and digital platforms to include online videos, posters and other marketing materials which will be used at recruitment events around the country. 

A team of qualified GPs have been recruited as ambassadors to spread the word about general practice, talk about their experiences and provide first-hand advice and experience to those applying this year.

Dr Maureen Baker, Chair of the RCGP said: “We hope this video tackles the perception that general practice is not as exciting as other medical specialties. Nothing could be further from the truth.

“I’ve been a GP for more than 30 years – it is a stimulating and diverse profession that offers numerous opportunities. What’s more, GPs are now performing procedures every day in our consultation rooms that a decade ago would automatically have been referred to hospital specialists.

“General practice is under pressure, but there is now a real push for more resources into general practice and to build up the GP workforce. To any medical student considering general practice – I welcome you to a challenging yet exhilarating career where no two days are ever the same.”

Meanwhile, Professor Sir Bruce Keogh, National Medical Director, NHS England, described GPs as “the backbone” of the NHS.

“We need more GPs. They are true doctors in the broadest sense and the backbone of our NHS. Medicine and technology are changing fast. A lot of what is now done in hospitals will soon be done by GPs and others, in or close to peoples' homes. This campaign aims to open the eyes of medical students and young doctors to the variety, wealth of opportunities and satisfaction that a career in primary care can offer,” he said.

Earlier this week, The RCGP demanded a ‘cast iron guarantee’ from Jeremy Hunt that he would not allow his proposals to impose the new contract on junior doctors to adversely affect the pay and conditions of GP trainees, warning that to do so would mean the government missing its target of recruiting 5,000 new GPs.

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