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General Practice Medicine: What you need to know

The Medical Council recognises 57 medical specialties for the purposes of specialist registration in Ireland. This article explains the specialty of General Practice.

What is General Practice Medicine?

General Practice provides continuing, comprehensive, coordinated and person-centred health care to patients in their communities. GPs and GP-led multi-disciplinary teams manage the widest range of health problems; providing both systematic and opportunistic health promotion, making accurate diagnoses and risk assessments; dealing with multimorbidity; coordinating long-term care; and addressing the physical, social and psychological aspects of patients’ wellbeing throughout their lives. GPs are also integrally involved in deciding how health and social services should be organised to deliver safe, effective and accessible care to patients in their communities.

The Irish College of General Practitioners is responsible for training, education and standards of practice in General Practice Medicine in Ireland. The current training pathway involves four years of post-internship training (two years at basic specialist training level in a hospital setting and two years in an approved General Practice setting).

Successful completion of the national training programme, leading to the award of a Certificate of Satisfactory Completion of Specialist Training, will enable doctors to register as specialists in General Practice on the Medical Council’s Register.