Intended for healthcare professionals

Research Article

Role and responsibilities of general practitioner organisers of continuing medical education.

Br Med J (Clin Res Ed) 1987; 294 doi: (Published 28 February 1987) Cite this as: Br Med J (Clin Res Ed) 1987;294:550
  1. R M Berrington,
  2. M Varnam


    A total of 359 general practitioner organisers of continuing medical education in England and Wales were sent a questionnaire on their role and responsibilities in 1985; 206 with relevant duties replied. The results of the survey showed that they were playing an effective part in planning, organising, and evaluating educational activities at district level, that many were highly qualified and experienced general practitioners, and that many had previously been concerned in vocational training. Less than half had undergone formal training for their continuing education role. Only 105 (51%) were appointed district general practitioner tutors. They were more active in postgraduate centres than in practice based education. Almost a quarter (49) spent three to five hours a week on their educational duties, but 111 (54%) spent fewer hours. Although well provided with educational resources, few had any control over district educational funds, and over half lacked office space. As to remuneration, 161 (78%) received 500 pounds or less a year and almost two thirds received no reimbursement for expenses. Most had no job description. Attention is drawn to the case for appointing general practitioner organisers of continuing medical education ("district general practice tutors") in all districts of England and Wales, to their role in improving the participation of general practitioners in continuing medical education, and to the urgent need for a national agreement on their job description, preparation, support, and remuneration.