A new campaign aimed at getting hundreds of family doctors to return to general practice has been launched this week.
It will raise the profile of a scheme that has already attracted almost 800 GPs into coming out of retirement, returning to the profession after taking a break or working in another occupation, or moving from overseas.
NHS England and Health Education England (HEE) have produced a new brochure for GPs considering a return which details the improvements that the NHS Long Term Plan will deliver for general practice, with billions in extra funding and plans to recruit 22,000 health professionals to support GPs that will improve services for patients while also easing the GP workload.
The Induction and Refresher (I&R) Scheme will also be promoted through a digital, social media and print advertising campaign.
The Reverend Dr Anne Kazich, 49, who now works as both a part-time GP in Skelmersdale as well as a part-time community minister for the Anglican church, is among those who have recently returned.
The Rev Kazich left medicine in 2012 to follow her religious calling and train as a minister, but returned to general practice last year.
The healer said: “I always felt my ‘ministry’ was not just within the church but with people, so in 2017 I decided to return to medicine. Coming back to general practice felt like coming home. As I have a passion for healing and holistic approach, I’m glad because two vocations have come together in a way I would have never dreamed of.”
The Induction and Refresher Scheme was upgraded in 2016 with a new package of support to make it easier for doctors to return to the profession and a target of recruiting 500 GPs by 2020.
By the end of 2018 a total of 785 GPs had applied to join the scheme. Of these, 279 have now fully completed the programme and joined the GP workforce in England.
Now NHS England and HEE are looking to recruit hundreds more to help deliver the ambitions of the NHS Long Term Plan.
To read more about this campaign, please visit NHS England’s website.