Developing GP skills for remote consultation

My Topol fellowship problem / project:

The COVID-19 pandemic has caused major disruption to the training of the future General Practitioner (GP) workforce in the United Kingdom. Usual face-to-face training sessions and professional examinations have been adjusted to account for social distancing and new restrictions. In addition, the ways in which general practice services are being delivered to patients have changed rapidly, with vastly-reduced face-to-face consultations and remote consultation (telephone, email and video) quickly becoming the norm.

A key outcome from the Topol review was a focus on a digital ready workforce. The use of digital technology in medical education is increasing. Modern GPs require a core set of digital health skills and the confidence to apply these in practice. GP training in the UK has not kept pace with digital technology. My project will look to address this issue focusing on the development of skills for remote consultation.

My project aim is to develop a teaching framework along with educational resources, to allow training in remote consultation to become part of the core teaching for GP trainees, assisting them to acquire the skills and confidence required to become effective members of a digitally-ready GP workforce.

I am an Academic General Practice trainee based in the West Midlands. My working week is split between General Practice (clinical work) and the Unit of Academic Primary at Warwick Medical School (research and academic work). I am also currently completing an MSc by research focusing on Digital Health.

Prior to GP training I completed core training in Emergency Medicine and spent some time as a Clinical Radiology trainee.