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There has been a lot happening this last month, much of which is of interest and importance to sessional GPs, and I want to highlight just a few of these for you in this enewsletter.
We have seen the publication of the new RCGP appraisal and revalidation guidance. This has been significantly revised, much informed by a survey the RCGP performed last year. The shift in emphasis to a more supportive and less onerous appraisal is to be very welcomed. An example of how the college has changed its thinking is in the area of significant events, where we no longer have to submit two SEAs a year (with the proviso that all SEAs that are GMC reported must continue to be submitted). Read Paula Wright’s blog: Updated RCGP guidance: a more supportive appraisal for a useful summary of the changes and links to important further guidance.
On a different note, and picking up from last month’s enewsletter, the general practice workforce continues to struggle with challenges in recruitment and managing workload. The BMA has just published its third update on the heat map survey from the Urgent Prescription for General Practice campaign. In the last year, 90 per cent of GP practices in England have struggled to recruit locums, with 46 per cent of practices experiencing frequent trouble in finding locums. GP locums are an important part of the workforce and deliver an essential service, providing cover for practices, often at short notice. As partners and salaried GPs are struggling to cover unmanageable workload, the inability to recruit locums is worsening the situation. It is therefore an anathema to think that the DH proposes to introduce indicative locum rates, which will only serve to exacerbate the situation.
As part of its role in supporting GPs managing workload, the GPC has published templates to be used in the inappropriate workload shift onto GPs. Sessional GPs obviously have a huge role to play in managing workload in practices, so do look at the links on the follow up on diagnostic test following discharge from hospital as well as the three templates linked below:
An existing Quality First template to reject inappropriate requests to follow up hospital investigations
A new template to send copies of test results back to hospitals to ensure/confirm they have been actioned by the requesting clinician
A new template to let the CCG know if the above principles are being breached, so that appropriate commissioning levers can be applied
Vicky Weeks is the GPC sessional GPs subcommittee chair