8 Reasons To Choose General Practice

By December 16, 2019 January 8th, 2020 News

In this article, Dr Rosemary Gentle – a current registrar with EV GP Training, details her favourite things about General Practice.

Training Length

Need I say more? It’s a lovely succinct program and you can go from registrar to consultant in 2 years (or a few more if you train part time like me).

Flexible Hours

Unlike the hospital system where you hours are dictated to, in general practice, I’ve found my working days  / hours have been much more flexible. I work around kinder commitments and I always add a few breaks into my day to make sure I leave on time. It’s just a totally different atmosphere to the night shift, over worked hospital doctor lifestyle I was used to.

Areas To Specialise In

In GP, you can continue to find areas that you are interested in or are passionate about. I love women’s health and children’s health so during my training I have done both the certificate of women’s health as well as the Sydney child health diploma. This means I can provide shared care, even as a registrar, and I end up attracting more of these patient’s because of the training and my passion in these areas.

Variety Of Work

No two patients are alike. From one consultation to the next you might have someone with reflux, someone with suicidal thoughts, chest pain,  needing to break a new diagnosis of cancer and then vaccinate a baby. You might see someone in their first years of life followed by patients in their last. It’s just so varied that I actually love the ‘just here for a medical certificate’ consultations which people would tell me was all I would do in GP. It’s not.

Longitudinal Role In A Patient’s Health Journey

I love getting to see a patient through their healthcare journey. My favourite example is when I helped a woman prepare for pregnancy, celebrated with her when she became pregnant, helped manage her pregnancy and then got to see her baby when he was born, as well as become his doctor. It’s an amazing feeling.

Independence

You have your own consulting room and you start to accumulate your own loyal patients from day one with the added benefit of the support and back up of your supervisors.

Collaboration

Another misconception was that GP would be lonely. It’s not. There’s always someone around for a chat, be it coming in for some help in a consultation or you being called in to see something interesting. In between patients you can always say hi to people and I’m often off having a chat with whoever is free.
Yes you’re in your own room when you’re doing consultations but it has never felt isolating, in fact, being at a good GP clinic feels like you’re a part of a family which is why I absolutely love going to work.

Support

I remember being overworked and undervalued in hospitals, feeling guilty for taking a sick day. In GP land, if you’re unwell, they send you home (the nurse marches you out, no questions asked). If family commitments come up they’re happy to work around you, and if a family emergency comes up they cancel your patients and get you out of there. It’s a sort of caring that you don’t get elsewhere. As I said before, it’s more like you’re a part of a family rather than just a cog in a big machine.