UNIVARSITY.ORG | General Practice (GP) Recruitment
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03 Mar General Practice (GP) Recruitment

These regulatory changes have led many smaller towns and cities in the U.K. to undertake GP recruitment protocols that provide them with the medical help they need immediately, and which potentially lead to long-term relocation of certified medical practitioners to the geographic area.

Many cities and towns in the U.K. are faced with impending shortages of qualified medical practitioners. As the GPs in these areas are approaching or have already reached retirement age, many municipal authorities are left searching for ways in which to find the new medical professionals they need. This has lead to an upswing in national recruitment programs and in international recruitment efforts as well.

Recruitment Firms

Hiring a professional firm or organization to perform GP recruitment is the best practice to ensure having the medical help that is necessary. A firm is able to recruit locally, nationally and internationally, and has the contacts to locate the best and brightest candidates.

Many municipal leaders will also undertake their own recruitment drives, utilizing the national GP recruitment posting service and other similar job boards to attract GP interest and applications. Most authorities find that a combination of their own recruitment efforts and the hiring of a professional recruitment service are required in order to secure the number of candidates necessary to achieve optimum patient to doctor ratios in certain geographic areas.

Educational and Training Requirements

GPs are required to complete four years at university in an undergraduate medical program. Post graduate study and training is also required in order to become a certified GP in the UK. This compulsory training includes a minimum of three full years of on the job GP Specialty Training (GPST).

GPST typically consists of two required posts. The first is a post in an approved training practice. The second is a post with an approved hospital. Each of these training posts usually lasts a minimum of 18 months.

International Recruitment and Regulatory Requirements

International GP recruitment can be challenging for hospitals, general practices, and municipal governments to complete on their own. This is due in part to the national certification standards in place for GPs in the UK. A recruitment firm will be able to assist in making international recruitment easier by ensuring that international candidates either meet the requirements for placement in a GP training position or in a certified GP placement.

Retaining Practitioners

For most, the GP recruitment efforts are twofold. First, they are interested in recruiting grads into GP training in the region. Secondly, they are hoping to retain at least some of those GPs even after training is completed. The training period provides the time necessary for GPs to get settled in, feel rewarded, and begin to view the specific location as home, improving the chances that they will remain in the post even after completion of their compulsory training.



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