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Medical Education News (December 2017)

By December 8, 2017December 13th, 2017No Comments

 “Self-directed learning needs a lot of direction.”
Cees van der Vleuten at RACGP Workshop on Assessment 3 November 2017


Health Minister’s Announcement at GP17         

Unless you have been on an extended holiday on a deserted island you will have heard by now about the announcement that ACRRM and RACGP will be fully responsible for GP training by 2022.

So, what happens now? A number of clichés about “circles” and “back to the future” are being used in discussions following this announcement. However, I will attempt to reflect on that question from an education and training perspective.

There are a number of significant opportunities in what is being referred to as a four-year “transition period”. Whilst there is talk of changes to assessments, more monitoring and support for IMGs working in General Practice, and clarity on what “generalism” means, I see this as an opportunity to consider significantly new models of training. It is time to move away from the arbitrary (numerical and time) inputs and historical precedents to a greater focus on demonstrable outcomes, with learners being responsible for providing evidence of their progress to benchmarked milestones through trusted relationships and educational alliances. Honest, meaningful and regular dialogues with circular feedback will be fundamental to any new training model.

It is imperative that RTOs and the Colleges engage and embrace the opportunities afforded by the Health Minister’s announcement. The risk is we become overwhelmed by the possibilities and miss a once-in-a-lifetime chance to change the training landscape to better meet the health needs of our patient populations.

Benjamin Franklin is reported to have said, “If you want something done, give it to a busy person.” I understand that everyone is busy, but I encourage you all to participate in this process.


Neil Spike, Director of Training