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Could an undergraduate apprenticeship create the generalists the NHS needs?

Published: 16 November, 2018

The NHS desperately needs new GPs but nearly two-thirds of medical students see GPs as having a lower status than hospital specialists and half think the culture of medical school has a negative influence on their views of general practice. To try and tackle this – and produce more generalist doctors who can treat a wide range of patients – Imperial College, London, has adopted a model developed in the U.S. that gives students a group of patients to manage as part of their teaching.
Research has shown that these ‘longitudinal integrated clerkships,’ produce students with more patient-centred attitudes who feel more prepared to face professional challenges, and have developed more holistic medical practices. The college has started offering an integrated clinical apprenticeship to fifth-year medical students, who spend a day a week in primary care with their own caseload of patients. Students see patients at home, do follow-up, accompany them to outpatient clinics and feed back to the GP. They have a mentor supporting their work, have debriefings, and are trained in health coaching. Third-year students at Imperial also follow a 10-week  mini integrated clerkship programme that includes designing and implementing a community action project.

GP recruitment: could an undergraduate apprenticeship create the generalists the NHS needs?
BMJ 2018;363:k4408, 22 October 2018 [Subscription or NHS OpenAthens ID required]

Last updated: 12 November, 2018

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