Feature Interview

Michael Kidd on primary care’s global challenge

BMJ 2013; 347 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.f7239 (Published 09 December 2013) Cite this as: BMJ 2013;347:f7239
  1. Tiago Villanueva, editorial registrar
  1. 1 BMJ, London WC1H 9JR, UK
  1. tvillanueva{at}bmj.com

Michael Kidd, the new leader of a global family doctor organisation, speaks to Tiago Villanueva about the future of primary care

In 2008, the World Health Organization’s World Health Report called for the strengthening of primary care and general practice around the world. Since then, many countries have made enormous progress, but the pace of change differs depending on where you are in the world. Many obstacles remain, and the challenges lying ahead are enormous. Undergraduate and postgraduate training standards in general practice vary tremendously, and the recruitment and retention of GPs continue to be a problem in both developed and low and middle income countries. Delivery of care has also changed dramatically, with increasing emphasis being placed on a team and multidisciplinary approach as well as on task substitution. The generalist tradition does not seem to be what it was. I was curious to learn the views of the new top man at the World Organization of Family Doctors (WONCA) as he passed through London.

Michael Kidd is an Australian general practitioner and the executive dean of the faculty of health sciences at Flinders University, Adelaide. He has a track record as an academic GP and researcher, but, as president of WONCA since June, he now has an opportunity to influence general practice and primary care globally. WONCA represents more than half a million family doctors in 130 countries.

Kidd tells me that he sees primary healthcare as the “answer to the world’s great healthcare challenges.” He says, “The reasons are really obvious to all of us: we have …

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