Education and training in general practice/family medicine : report on a WHO workshop, St. Petersburg, Russian Federation, 21-23 October 1997
Health care reform
Primary health care
Commonwealth of Independent States
Community Health and Primary Health Care
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EUR/ICP/DLVR 01 03 02
The Workshop was convened to discuss the introduction of the subject of general practice/family medicine (GP/FM) into undergraduate medical education and the establishment of specialist training schemes at postgraduate level in the newly independent states (NIS) of the former USSR. Other objectives were to review the experience of the participating countries, to give participants the opportunity of learning from each other, and to establish a network whereby developments in strengthening GP/FM would be regularly reviewed. The participants, who came from all 12 NIS, were administrators responsible for the development of GP/FM and professors from the medical universities that have introduced training programmes for general practitioners. Speakers at the meeting were experts from countries that had established training programmes in GP/FM some years earlier. Important concepts in teaching and training in general practice were presented, with an emphasis on the issues that distinguish GP/FM from other specialities, such as continuity and comprehensiveness of care and the establishment of interpersonal relationships with patients. Specific clinical skills and attitudes were also emphasized. The reforms in certain countries and the reorganization of curricula in specific medical schools were used to illustrate the general principles mentioned. Progress in implementing reform in the NIS was reviewed. Steps have been taken everywhere, although the pace has been different. The main difficulties relate to the reform of the health care system, so that GP/FM becomes a key part of primary health care, rather than to educational reform. The main conclusions of the meeting reiterated that family medicine should be taught and departments of GP/FM established in all medical schools, and that postgraduate training should be based on residential programmes. Appropriate legislative measures were also mentioned. The participants recommended that the regional Office should continue to provide support to the reform of education in GP/FM, among other things through organizing regular meetings of the group, and that countries should continue to provide support to the efforts to strengthen education and training in GP/FM
EUR/ICP/DLVR 01 03 02
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