RCGP Chair responds to the GMC’s annual national training survey

Responding to the GMC’s annual national training survey which found GP trainers and trainees were at high risk of burnout, Professor Kamila Hawthorne, Chair of the Royal College of GPs said: "Our trainees are the future and our patients and our profession are depending on them. However, the College has been warning for years that without urgent action to address excessive workforce and workload pressures in general practice, more trainees will leave the profession before or shortly after they qualify.

"We want to create a supportive environment for our trainees, so they can deliver safe, timely and effective patient care, while developing the skills they need to fully-qualify for independent practice. However, they are doing so in the context of demand that is growing both in volume and complexity - with both trainees and qualified GPs stretched beyond healthy limits.

"We are working tirelessly delivering tens of millions of appointments per month compared to before the pandemic, but with 930 fewer GPs than 2019. Our own College surveys show that a further 22,000 fully-qualified GPs could leave in the next five years unless working conditions improve.

“It is wonderful that we have more GPs in training than ever before and we cannot allow this progress to be undermined. We are pleased that the announcement of the long-term workforce plan pledges to train more medical students and also outlines plans to increase capacity in GP training. But we also need urgent action to retain the brilliant GPs we already have so that current and future generations of GPs can do their jobs and provide high quality care for their patients without compromising their own health and wellbeing.”

Further information

RCGP Press office: 0203 188 7659

Notes to editor

The Royal College of General Practitioners is a network of more than 54,000 family doctors working to improve care for patients. We work to encourage and maintain the highest standards of general medical practice and act as the voice of GPs on education, training, research and clinical standards.