Background: In 1993 the General Medical Council published its recommendations on undergraduate medical education.
Aim: To study the implementation of these recommendations in UK medical schools by means of informal visitations.
Methods: Teams consisting of 3-5 members visited the 25 UK medical schools in a 3-year period commencing in early 1995.
Results: Substantial changes have occurred in undergraduate medical education since the publication of Tomorrow's Doctors. Of the 13 principal recommendations, 3 had been implemented in most medical schools and a further 8 substantially implemented by the majority. However, progress in health promotion and the development of appropriate assessment schemes has been slower.
Conclusions: Informal visits have served a useful purpose in monitoring the implementation of the General Medical Council's recommendations on undergraduate medical education. In addition, they have encouraged dialogue with the medical schools and allowed the identification of examples of good practice including the establishment by most schools of medical education units.