General Practitioner (GP)

GPs look after multiple aspects of a patient’s needs – physical and emotional. They will see patients of all ages and provide continuity of care – managing and improving the general health of their local patient population.

This role is unique to primary care as secondary care doctors specialise into different aspects of the medical field.

There are three main types of GP within primary care.

GP Partner

A GP Partner is self-employed and takes on part-ownership of the practice, this allows the partner a say in how it’s run, and a share of practice profits. Although being a GP partner allows greater control, there is also greater liability and responsibility involved.

Salaried GP

A salaried GP work as an employee of the practice.

Locum GP

A locum GP is someone who provides cover in the place of another GP. Locums are generally self-employed and are sometimes referred to as freelance GPs. They have complete control and flexibility over when and where they work.

The main duties of a GP involve;
  • speaking to patients about their symptoms to work towards diagnosis
  • using clinical examination skills to aid diagnosis
  • arranging necessary investigations such as blood tests and x-rays
  • supporting patient self-care
A GP is someone who;
  • has excellent knowledge retention
  • believes in continuous learning and development
  • is happy to take a supervisory role within a team

GP Training:

A GP qualification is achieved after a 5-year undergraduate degree or a 4-year postgraduate degree in medicine. After medical school is a 2-year paid foundation programme with 6 work placements across different settings. Upon the completion of the foundation programme there is the opportunity for paid speciality training which takes a minimum of 3 years. General Practitioners receive a UK GP Certificate of Completion of Training which allows them to work as a GP in primary care.

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