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Parliamentary debates and questions

S5W-21360: Neil Findlay (Lothian)

Scottish Labour

Date lodged: 31 January 2019

To ask the Scottish Government how long it takes to (a) train and (b) recruit a GP.

Answered by: Jeane Freeman 26 February 2019

(a) The GMC, acting as the regulator of the medical profession, oversees UK medical education and training. Medical training leading to qualification as a GP generally consists of a 5 year degree at medical school or in the case of Scotland’s first graduate entry medical programme (ScotGEM) which has a GP focus, a 4 year degree. The undergraduate degree is followed by 2 years of foundation training and three years of GP specialty training. For those who train less than full time (LTFT) or return from out of practice, it can take longer.

(b) There is not a typical timescale for GP recruitment and it is a matter for independent contractors i.e. individual GP practices. The Scottish Government is taking forward a number of measures to improve recruitment and retention of GPs in the short and long term. For example by offering the ScotGEM course and return of service bursary we are encouraging more students into GP and, therefore, aim to increase the number of GPs in the long term.