General practice (GP)

General practitioners (GPs) treat all common medical conditions and refer patients to hospitals and other medical services for urgent and specialist treatment. They focus on the health of the whole person combining physical, psychological and social aspects of care.

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The video of Dr Hannah Warren (née Lambert) records her experiences as a GP.

Nature of the work

GPs are primary care doctors providing the first point of contact with the NHS for most people in their communities. GPs help patients by trying to identify problems they may have at an early stage which could be as varied as an infectious disease, cancer or a safeguarding issue. They are the trusted adults to whom patients first turn for advice and support. GPs also try wherever possible to maintain the health of patients through preventive care and health promotion.

GPs treat conditions such as:

Common procedures/interventions

These include:

GP with special interests

GPs with special interests (GPwSI) usually work clinically across a PCO (Primary Care Organisation) area or similar to help to reduce specialist waiting times and address local health needs. Some GPwSIs work with a local commissioning group helping to develop local guidelines, services and pathways of care. It is also common for medium to large group practices to share out the workload and encourage individuals to develop special interests and skills, for example, in dementia.

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