The guts of it

December 2009

Research

GP interest in teaching junior doctors

Does practice location, size and infrastructure matter?

Volume 38, No.12, December 2009 Pages 1000-1002

Jennifer Thomson

Belinda Allan

Katrina Anderson

Background

With the influx of Australian medical graduates into the workforce, new clinical prevocational training rotations within general practice need to be developed. This study describes the relationship between general practitioner teachers’ interest in hosting junior doctor rotations, and general practice characteristics including rural location, size and infrastructure.

Methods

All GP teachers of registrars and medical students in the Australian Capital Territory and southeast New South Wales were sent a survey. The features of rural location, size and infrastructure of these teachers’ general practices were analysed to determine their influence on teacher interest in hosting junior doctor rotations.

Results

Factors such as rural location and infrastructure did not influence willingness to host junior doctors significantly. However, those in medium sized practices were less interested than small or large practices.

Discussion

Rural location and teaching room infrastructure of practices need not be determinants in junior doctor teaching practice recruitment, while medium practice size is a significant determinant of lack of teacher interest in hosting junior doctors. This requires further investigation.

Junior doctors’ medical education is venturing from major public teaching hospitals into community based health services.1 In 2012, the number of medical graduates in Australia will have doubled compared to 2005.2 The need for adequate training posts may be met by outsourcing teaching and diversifying clinical educational opportunities through general practice rotations.

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Correspondence afp@racgp.org.au

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