Objective: The aim of this study is to assess general practice registrars' (GPRs) learning needs in relation to their procedural skills development and compare these with the learning opportunities offered by their general practice supervisors (GPSs).
Method: A 43 item questionnaire was designed to assess the procedural skills development needs of GPRs. The questionnaire was administered to GPSs and GPRs.
Results: GPRs can expect to consolidate their skills in the areas of joint injections. ENT procedures and some small surgical procedures. They are unlikely to gain experience in the areas of proctology, the use of the microscope as a diagnostic tool, cardiac stress testing, hearing assessment and some less frequently needed procedures. Respondents identified spinal mobilisation manipulation, flexible sigmoidoscopy, colposcopy and fine needle aspiration biopsy as procedures they would like to see performed in general practice.
Conclusion: GPRs are keen to enhance their procedural skills in a wide range of areas. They cannot necessarily expect that their general practice attachment will provide the opportunities to develop all skills desired. The Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP) Training Program needs to provide registrars with a list of core skills that are expected of every general practitioner (GP). To ensure this objective is achieved, innovative learning opportunities for GPSs and GPRs in the domain of psychomotor competencies need to be developed.