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General Practice Specialty Training Programme


General Practice Specialty Training Programme

Our General Practice Specialty Training Programme offers comprehensive, high quality specialist training based in a busy District General Hospital and a variety of urban, semi urban and remote and rural practices.
We provide a balanced rotation of specialties that are important for general practice training and there is an active educational programme with release to general practice throughout the 4 years of the programme.
The training practices deliver a high quality of training.  All practices have a broad multi-professional team approach to primary care and all team members are involved in supporting and teaching their registrars.
Experience in hospital and general practice will combine to deliver the whole of the GP curriculum and will prepare the trainee for the membership of the Royal College of General Practitioners.
This programme offers educationally sound training in beautiful surroundings.  There are often more opportunities in a District General Hospital to take clinical responsibility and perform procedures.  There is a comprehensive educational programme based at Dumfries & Galloway Royal Infirmary (in addition to the GPST programme).
Doctors locally are involved in research, sports medicine, supporting sports events, occupational health, BASICS providers (acute pre hospital care), mountain rescue, community hospitals, benefits agency and forensic work. Trainees may be able to develop interests in any of these and many other areas associated with practicing medicine.
ALS courses are provided for trainees, additional Scottish Neonatal Resuscitation Courses for all Paediatric and Obstetric trainees, Emergency Radiology courses for all Accident & Emergency trainees and IMPACT courses are also available. BASICS training is offered to all trainees as some stage in their training.
Removal expenses are available for trainees joining the scheme.

The Programme

Sample rotations are as follows, but these are subject to change and are not guaranteed.

GPST 1.1
GPST 1.1
GPST 1.2
GPST 1.2

GPST Hospital Posts


Trainees will initially work in a general paediatric ward where they will learn to deal with all types of acute paediatric referrals, gain experience of the common conditions of childhood and how to handle children and their parents.  They will perform practical procedures and learn the best way to take blood from children.  They will develop experience of examination of the new born, screening procedures and infant follow up.  Acute resuscitation training in paediatrics and neonates is provided, including the certificated Neonatal Life Support course.  There is bleep free education on a weekly basis including half day grand rounds and CPD sessions and tutorial sessions presented by FY2 and GPST2 trainees.  Trainees will experience some working at night, with good registrar support, in a joint scheme with Obstetrics.


Psychiatric services are based in Midpark Hospital in Dumfries, with Community Mental Health Teams (CMHT) working throughout the region.  Mental health services are provided on an in-patient and out-patient basis by CMHT.  Services include old age, general adult, rehabilitation, child and adolescent, addiction, forensic, learning disability and eating disorders.  Trainees will be part of a team looking after in-patients as well as experiencing community psychiatry and ECT.  The department has an internal training programme with a full induction and weekly teaching sessions.

Obstetrics and Gynaecology

Obstetrics and Gynaecology services are based in the modern Cresswell Maternity Unit attached to the main Infirmary.  Along with the challenge of providing care to patients across a large geographical area, trainees will experience a wide range of clinical activity during their time with the department.  Gynaecology outpatient services include Hysteroscopy, Colposcopy and clinics for Gynaecological Oncology, Vulval Disease, Urogynaecology, HRT and Fertility.  Obstetrics services include pre-natal diagnosis with ultrasound and amniocentesis and specialist clinics for women who have drug or alcohol addiction and for those with diabetes.  The department is involved in the provision of Scottish Core Obstetric Teaching and Training in Emergencies (SCOTTIE) courses twice a year and there are weekly educational meetings with topics which vary from audit projects to the presentation of interesting or unusual cases.


The Ophthalmology attachment is a very attractive and useful posting for the GP Trainees.  This job involves dealing with acute referrals from primary care and A&E.  This post not only offers numerous opportunities to do supervised general eye clinics, but also gives insight into speciality clinics including glaucoma, paediatric eye conditions, thyroid eye disease, diabetes and oculoplastics.  Trainees are welcome to attend theatre sessions to assist and observe in various eye operations.  This placement is the ideal opportunity to develop skills in fundoscopy and slit lamp examination.  Teaching is delivered by weekly one to one tutorials from the consultants and sessions presented by trainees.

General Medicine

Trainees will gain excellent experience in general medicine with rotations in general and specialist wards, the Acute Medical Unit (AMU) and medical HDU.  You will spend time on-call for unselected medical admissions, in-patient referrals and ward cover.  We are a busy District General Hospital and there will be plenty of opportunity to perform practical procedures under the guidance of supportive senior staff.  You will be supervised by enthusiastic and experienced seniors who will allow you to develop your skills and assume responsibility appropriate to your grade.  Within some specialties there will be opportunities to attend clinics.  There are weekly Grand Round and Journal Club meetings as well as regular morbidity and mortality/patient safety meetings and clinical skills teaching.

Emergency Medicine

The Emergency Department covers a large geographical area, and offers junior doctors excellent training opportunities, providing experience in the management of a wide range of undifferentiated clinical conditions from minor illness to life threatening injury.  Trainees are supervised 24 hours per day from a combination of Consultant and middle grade staff, with feedback from previous trainees highlighting the quality of supervision as well as recognising the department as a quality learning environment.  Trainees receive a comprehensive induction programme along with weekly departmental teaching including clinical and x-ray tutorials, clinical simulation and bi-monthly Morbidity & Mortality meetings.  The department Consultants are actively involved in departmental education, and ample opportunities exist for teaching and audit.


Trainees in ENT will have the chance to be a vital part of a hard working team who take acute referrals from GPs and A&E.  This gives valuable experience to take back to general practice.  They will become comfortable examining and managing adult and paediatric patients with common ENT problems.  Trainees will be expected to attend clinic where they will see patients and manage chronic ENT conditions under the close supervision of the Consultants.  In addition, trainees will be given the opportunity to attend and assist in surgical operations.  Teaching is weekly with the consultants and staff grades present.

Palliative Care

Our training scheme is one of only a few in Scotland to offer a rotation in Palliative Care. Trainees will be based in The Alexandra Unit, a specialist Palliative Care centre within Dumfries & Galloway Royal Infirmary. Here you will work with an experienced and supportive team of doctors, who manage both in-patients and out-patients. You will see and treat symptoms of palliative patients and become more acquainted and comfortable using syringe drivers and the medications used in them. Trainees will be involved in sensitive discussions with patients and their families, learning the skills necessary to manage ethical dilemmas. You will also have the opportunity to see and help with patients who are currently undergoing chemotherapy and be involved in working with the Macmillan nurses, following them as they see patients in the community. You will be closely supervised by the Palliative Care team and receive one to one teaching on a regular basis, tailored to your needs and desires.

The Practices

There are currently 11 training practices in Dumfries and Galloway – a mixture of urban, semi urban and rural.   Depending on your rotation, you will spend either 18 or 24 months in general practice. This will usually be in the same practice offering consistency and the opportunity to become an integrated member of that practice team. The training practices deliver a high quality of training. All practices have a broad multi-professional team approach to primary care and all team members are involved in supporting and teaching the GP Specialist trainees. There are a wide variety of practices in the region ranging from town practices in Dumfries, Annan and Stranraer to small town and rural practices such as Dunscore and Thornhill. Each provides comprehensive training and wide ranging experience with additional experiences particular to that type of practice.

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