A UK-wide postal survey to evaluate palliative care education amongst General Practice Registrars

Palliat Med. 2006 Jun;20(4):463-9. doi: 10.1191/0269216306pm1140oa.


Objectives: To evaluate the content of General Practice Registrars' (GPRs) palliative care education in the U.K.

Methods: Postal questionnaires were sent to 492 eligible GPRs across six purposively sampled U.K. postgraduate deaneries.

Results: GPRs were satisfied with their course coverage on control of pain, other symptoms and communication skills, and were also moderately confident in applying the knowledge gained in these areas. They showed a high level of knowledge in the management of cancer-related pain. There was less satisfaction with the coverage given to syringe driver use (38%) and bereavement care (36%), with fewer expressing confidence in applying their knowledge to these areas.

Conclusions: GPRs have mixed perceptions about their palliative care education. Future educational packages should ensure that GPRs receive planned systematic training in bereavement care and some practical experience in the use of syringe drivers. Both Postgraduate General Practice Education departments and specialist palliative care providers should explore ways of working more closely together to provide GPRs with more expertize in palliative care.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Clinical Competence / standards*
  • Communication
  • Education, Medical, Graduate*
  • Family Practice / education*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasms / therapy
  • Palliative Care*
  • Physician-Patient Relations
  • United Kingdom