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New campaign launched to inspire young medics to choose general practice

24 September 2015

Four of the country’s leading health bodies have joined forces to launch a new campaign to encourage more young doctors to become GPs.

The campaign forms one strand of the 10 point action plan Building the Workforce – the New Deal for General Practice published in January 2015 and is aimed at increasing the number of doctors choosing to pursue a career as a GP.

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 inspiring and informing young medics about a career in general practice as they make their decision about which speciality training to apply for this autumn.

The campaign includes 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.

Professor Simon Gregory, Director and Dean of Education and Quality, Midlands and East and HEE clinical lead for the campaign said:

We are excited by this new campaign as we’re reaching out specifically to young doctors using innovative channels that are relevant to them.

I have worked in general practice for more than twenty years and it has been a truly stimulating and rewarding career.  I’d love other young people coming through medical school now to feel the same way towards general practice as I do.  And we’ve been hearing these sentiments already from the students we’ve spoken to across the country.  They recognise the challenge of general practice, but tell us they’re attracted by the variety of work, the fact every day is different and that we care for someone at every stage of their life, in good times and bad.

Health Secretary, Jeremy Hunt said:

We already know GPs are the bedrock of our health service – and the NHS’s own plan for the future makes them the driving force for change in the way we care for people. As the campaign says, there has never been a more exciting time to be a part of general practice – and I hope this will help to attract the GPs of tomorrow.

Dr Maureen Baker, Chair of the RCGP Council 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.

Professor Sir Bruce Keogh, National Medical Director, NHS England said:

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.