DH plans to raise number of GPs by 400

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female GP The number of GPs in England will rise by 400 over the next two years, according to the Government’s mandate for Health Education England (HEE).

The 14% increase in the number of GP training posts seeks to address the growing need to reduce the pressure on secondary care by improving and extending primary care.

In addition, the ‘task force’ recently set up to increase the number of doctors in emergency care will be maintained until 2015.

The new mandate for HEE requires it to ensure that 50% of medical students are training to become GPs by 2015. This requires the number of GP training posts to increase from 2,850 to 3,250 by 2015.

The new body responsible for healthcare education and workforce planning will need to develop and implement a plan by this summer to draw more doctors into emergency care.

HEE will also need to:

• ensure and demonstrate that selection for training programmes is based on values and behaviours as well as technical and academic skills

• ensure that trainee doctors have enough time with patients

• ensure that at least 50% of student nurses have community placements as part of their training by March 2015

• develop a postgraduate training programme for nurses who care for older people with complex needs

• provide dementia awareness training – including early symptom recognition and effective interaction with patients – to 100,000 healthcare staff by March 2014.