Training resource for GP practice staff (2023)

Our aim is to provide you with an overview of 12 areas of training for practice staff and help you to stay on top of training demands.

Mandatory and statutory training for clinical staff

In some cases, what is described as mandatory or statutory training may not actually be the case. To help practices identify what training is required the following information should help.

Samples for cervical screening

It is good practice to ensure that practices are aware of guidance on training in cervical smear taking. CCGs may wish to monitor the quality of cytology services and take action if this reveals evidence of any shortcomings in quality.

There are, however, no contractual grounds for requiring GPs to undertake update training, unless this is expressly agreed as part of local PMS or APMS contractual arrangements.

The NHS cervical screening programme recommends that all practitioners taking cervical smear samples should undertake a minimum of a half day training programme every three years to ensure they are up to date with both the programme and the method of smear taking.


There are no mandatory requirements for performing spirometry.

Some practitioners who perform or interpret diagnostic spirometry in general practice may choose to be on the National Register.

This demonstrates they have achieved the standard of practice set out by the Association for Respiratory Technology and Physiology (ARTP).

CQC expects practices to be able to demonstrate that all staff who perform spirometry tests or interpret results are competent.

They can demonstrate this if the relevant staff members are on the National Register, but may choose to present other evidence.

Administering vaccines

Practices could be asked by CQC to demonstrate training for clinical staff linked to their specific clinical responsibilities.

For nursing staff, for example, this could be taking samples for the cervical screening programme, administering vaccines and for extended roles in treating minor illness and long-term conditions.

It is for the practice to determine how they demonstrate that their staff have the necessary skills to perform the activities asked of them.

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Minor surgery

Minor surgery is defined in the GP contract as 'curettage and cautery and, in relation to warts, verrucae and other skin lesions, cryocautery'.

There are no mandatory training requirements for performing minor surgery. It is up to the practice to determine the training required to meet the needs of their patients.

RCGPLearning provides minor surgery courses and the RCGP minor surgery page has links to NICE and NHS published guidance for the management of skin cancer and for the different levels of skills required.

Safeguarding vulnerable children

Children and young people ethics toolkit

Legal and ethical factors doctors need to consider when making decisions about children and young people such as consent, refusal of treatment and confidentiality.

Children and young people toolkit

The Health and Social Care Act does not set out the exact level, content or frequency of training in safeguarding children.

However, there is a regulatory requirement to safeguard ‘service users’ from abuse and improper treatment, and that systems and processes must be established and operative effectively to prevent abuse of service users. Read more from CQC.

Under GP contract arrangements, it is for contractors to ensure that their staff are adequately trained. It is the responsibility of the contract holder to demonstrate that staff are appropriately trained to a level that keeps them and the public safe.

Who should do it?

All staff who, within their role, have contact (however small) with children and young people, parents/carers or adults who may pose a risk to children are recommended to have Level 2 competency.

GPs and practice nurses (including nurse practitioners) are recommended to have level 3 competency.

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Read the intercollegiate guidelines.

How it should be completed

Face to face or e-learning.

Safeguarding vulnerable adults

Adult safeguarding toolkit

This toolkit is about the doctor's role in safeguarding adults who may be at risk of abuse or neglect.

Adult safeguarding toolkit

The Health and Social Care Act does not set out the exact level of training in safeguarding vulnerable adults. There is a regulatory requirement to safeguard patients from abuse and improper treatment, and that persons. Employees must receive appropriate support and training as is necessary to enable them to carry out their duties.

Under GP contract arrangements, it is for contractors to ensure that their staff are adequately trained. It is the responsibility of the contract holder to demonstrate that staff are appropriately trained to a level that keeps them and the public safe.

Who should do it?

All staff. Reception staff are recommended to hold level 1 competency, practice nurses and healthcare assistants level 2 and GPs level 3.

Read the intercollegiate guidelines.

How it should be completed

The CQC advise face to face training. Alternatively, you could complete an e-learning module.

GPs and practice staff should be able to:

  • demonstrate their understanding of the definition of an adult at risk and the types of abuse they may be subject to
  • be aware of the internal arrangements for recording a safeguarding adult concern, and this will be set out in a safeguarding adult’s policy
  • be aware of the external process for reporting the concern and that this is in line with local multi-agency policy and procedures.

Mental capacity act and deprivation of liberty safeguards

Mental Capacity Act toolkit

This toolkit acts as a prompt to doctors when they are providing care and treatment for people who lack, or who may lack, the mental capacity to make decisions on their own behalf.

Assessing mental capacity toolkit

The Mental Capacity Act requires that anyone who cares for or treats people with capacity issues respect their individual rights, acting in the best interests of the patient when making decisions on their behalf. Read more guidance from the CQC.

Who should do it?

All clinical staff.

How it should be completed

In the case of the mental capacity, inspectors will need evidence that staff have been trained, but more importantly that they understand how the Mental Capacity Act 2005 and deprivation of liberty safeguards impacts general practice.

Basic life support

All staff should understand their role as part of the team response to resuscitation. The CQC does not have explicit guidance around emergency equipment but has produced agreed principles and encourages practices to have defibrillators.

Who should do it?

All staff, including non-clinical, should undergo regular training in adult and child resuscitation appropriate to their position.

How and when it should be completed

Face to face training. Clinical staff should have annual updates but this is not mandatory.

Clinical staff should be able to:

  • recognise cardio-respiratory arrest
  • call for help and start CPR with defibrillation as appropriate
  • receive regular training updates at an appropriate frequency to maintain their competency
  • retain documentary evidence of completed and approved CPR training.
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Infection control

All GP practices are required to assess the risk of, and prevent, detect and control the spread of infections.

Following the code of practice on prevention and control of healthcare associated infection, issued by the Department of Health, the law says that the CQC must take the code into account when making decisions about registration.

By following the code, practices will be able to show how they are meeting their requirements. However, you may be able to demonstrate in a different way (equivalent or better) from that described in the code.

Who should do it?

Clinical staff and all relevant staff whose normal duties are directly or indirectly concerned with providing care.

How it should be completed

Face to face or e-learning.

Fire safety

In most healthcare premises, written instructions should be provided to your staff who have been nominated to carry out a designed safety task, such as calling the fire and rescue service or checking that exit doors are available for use at the start of each shift.

Fire action notices where used should be posted in prominent locations.

Who should do it?

All staff should complete fire safety training and be given instructions and information as soon as possible after they are appointed and regularly after that. It’s important to include staff who work outside of normal working hours, such as contract cleaners or maintenance staff. See more guidance from the Health and Safety Executive.

How it should be completed

Face to face combined with e-learning. E-learning on its own is not sufficient as it won’t take into account individual circumstances.

Information and instructions should be given in a form that can be used and understood. They should take account of those with disabilities such as hearing or sight impairment, those with learning difficulties or those who do not use English as their first language.

Practice staff should be able to:

  • know what to do if there is a fire
  • understand the measures that have been put in place to reduce the risk of fire
  • identify the people who have been nominated with responsibilities for fire safety
  • understand what the fire protection arrangements are including: the designated escape routes, location and operation of the fire-warning system and any fire-safety equipment required.

Health and safety

The Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 requires you to provide whatever information, instruction and training and supervision necessary to ensure, so far is reasonably practicable, the health and safety of your employees at work.

Who should do it?

All staff.

How it should be completed

Face to face or e-learning combined with face to face. E-learning alone will not cover local arrangements.

Manual handling

Employers have a legal obligation under the Manual Handling Operations Regulations 1992 to make a suitable and sufficient assessment of the risk to employees from manual handling.

Who should do it?

This is dependent on the tasks undertaken by staff.

How it should be completed

Face to face or e-learning.

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First aid

The training and experience of a GMC registered and licensed doctor, or a NMC registered nurse, qualifies them to administer first aid in the workplace.

This means there is no need for other staff to hold a First Aid at Work / Emergency First Aid at Work, or equivalent qualification.

CQC and GMC viewpoints


  • The CQC does not have a list of mandatory training for members of the GP practice team.
  • Advises that the exact training requirements is dependent on the role and specific responsibilities of each practice and the needs of the people using the service.
  • Advises that ultimately the practice is responsible for determining what training staff need to meet the needs of their patients.
  • Practice must have sufficient numbers of suitably qualified, competent, skilled and experienced staff to meet the needs of the people using the service at all times.

What do the CQC look at when carrying out an inspection?

  • Whether staff have the right qualifications, skills and knowledge and experience to do their job.
  • How the practice identifies the learning needs of staff.
  • Whether they have appropriate training to meet the learning needs of staff and to cover the scope of their work.
  • Read more in CQC guidance on staffing.


The GMC’s Good Medical Practice sets out the following:

  • places a duty on doctors to keep their knowledge and skills up to date by regularly taking part in activities that maintain and develop their competence and performance
  • the GMC does not tell doctors what continuing professional development (CPD), or how much CPD, is right for them
  • doctors will need to judge how best to apply the principles of the GMC’s guidance to their own practice and professional development
  • doctors must consider their CPD needs across the whole of their professional practice. This includes both the clinical and the non-clinical aspects of practice, and any management, research, and teaching or training responsibilities they have.

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How can I improve my GP practice? ›

Improving GP practice ratings
  1. Strong leadership. ...
  2. Providing assurance. ...
  3. Staffing and training. ...
  4. Teamwork and communication. ...
  5. Involvement of patients and the local community. ...
  6. Using external support to help improvement.
19 Sept 2018

How often do GPs have to do CPR training? ›

It is generally accepted that all staff should have annual updates, whether they are in primary dental or medical care and that training should include CPR for children. Research suggests that skills degrade after 3 to 6 months but to undertake training more often is often not practicable.

Are GP practice staff NHS employees? ›

'GP practices are independent contractors…..and there is a clear distinction between independent contractor organisations purely set up to deliver NHS services and who are commissioned solely by the NHS, and truly private commercial providers which are businesses set up to provide health services and which would, and ...

How often should mandatory training take place? ›

Provide learning and development opportunities when identified or required and at least every 3 years.

What are the 3 key areas practices need to improve on to achieve best practice? ›

Essential and best practice

The changes required to achieve best practice include: a separate area for decontamination processes; a washer-disinfector; separate and centralised storage of equipment.

What challenges are GP practices facing? ›

GP out of hours services and various hospital urgent care services all offer very limited access to the huge amounts of people who attend general practice. Pressure induced by GP patients are claimed to overwhelm these services who inadequately cope with quite small shifts in numbers of attendees.

How long do GPs train for? ›

Specialty training (three years at present for GP, and for other specialties five to eight years) Once you begin GP specialty training it will be three years long. If you choose other specialty training pathways, the length of training will vary between five to eight years according to specialty.

Is prevent training mandatory for GPs? ›

Guidance for GPs

There is no specific duty for GP practices to undertake Prevent training. However, Prevent comes under safeguarding.

How many seconds can CPR be interrupted? ›

Since the 2005 update, resuscitation guidelines recommend a sequence of 30 compressions followed by a 5-s interruption for 2 ventilations, the standard 30:2 CPR.

How much does a GP practice get paid per patient 2022? ›

While no amendments are being made to the content of QOF, due to changes in the average number of patients per practice, the value of a QOF point will increase by 3.2% from £201.16 to £207.56.

How many appointments per 1000 patients should a GP offer? ›

Based on a widely accepted formula of 72 appointments per 1,000 patients each week and an average list size of 1,600 patients (per GP), the report, Safe Working in General Practice, proposes that GPs should be offering 115 appointments a week – an average of 23 a day over five days.

What band is a GP receptionist? ›

As a receptionist you would typically be paid at Agenda for Change band 2 or 3.

What training should healthcare staff have as a minimum? ›

All care organisations have a legal responsibility to provide staff with Health & Safety awareness training, including Fire Safety. Moving and Handling training is also mandatory and if staff are involved with preparing food or assisting at meal times then Food Safety and Hygiene training will also be mandatory.

How do I make mandatory training engaging? ›

Let's take a look at a few proven techniques.
  1. 1) Entertaining visuals make mandatory training more engaging. ...
  2. 2) Storytelling is a powerful way of communicating messages. ...
  3. 3) Role filters help you to make mandatory training relevant. ...
  4. 4) Diagnostics allow you to focus training towards the learners who need it.
26 Mar 2018

What training should be given to employees? ›

7 Types Of Employee Training, and When to Implement Each
  • Leadership training. ...
  • Compliance training. ...
  • Onboarding training. ...
  • Technical training. ...
  • Product training. ...
  • Sales training. ...
  • Anti-bias and diversity training.

What is best practice technique? ›

A best practice is a standard or set of guidelines that is known to produce good outcomes if followed. Best practices are related to how to carry out a task or configure something. Strict best practice guidelines may be set by a governing body or may be internal to an organization.

What are examples of best practices in healthcare? ›

Providers must deliver quality care, compassion, and convenient care access to ensure a positive patient experience.
  • Frame patient safety as key to positive patient experiences.
  • Treat patient consumerism like a retail experience.
  • Make healthcare access convenient.
2 Mar 2017

How do you promote best practice in healthcare? ›

Selecting best practice evidence to implement
  1. Relevance to the needs and setting of the community.
  2. Community participation.
  3. Stakeholder collaboration.
  4. Ethical soundness.
  5. Replicability.
  6. Effectiveness.
  7. Efficiency.
  8. Sustainability.

Why are GP practices still working differently? ›

GP practices are open but are working differently in order to protect patients and staff.

Why are GP practices working differently? ›

The pandemic changed the way all GPs had to work – in ways that kept patients and staff safe from Covid. This has meant things like asking patients to wear masks in surgeries; and assessing people over the phone or asking them to fill out online consultation forms first.

Why are GP practices closing? ›

It found that the final straw for the majority of practices that have closed for good have tended to be recruitment issues, although CQC ratings and the ending of APMS contracts were major factors too.

What age do GPs retire at? ›

Retirement age for self-employed workers

General practitioners (GPs) must retire from the General Medical Services scheme at age 72.

What is an average GPs salary? ›

In reality, the vast majority of GPs earn somewhere between £70,000 and £100,000 – salaries much more in line with other specialists and consultants.

Are GPs paid well? ›

2) salaried GPs who are employees of independent contractor practices or directly employed by primary care organisations. From 1 April 2022, the pay range for salaried GPs is £65,070 to £98,194.

What are mandatory training for GPs? ›

Training resource for GP practice staff
  • Mandatory and statutory training for clinical staff.
  • Safeguarding vulnerable children.
  • Safeguarding vulnerable adults.
  • Mental capacity act and deprivation of liberty safeguards.
  • Basic life support.
  • Infection control.
  • Fire safety.
  • Health and safety.
4 Oct 2022

What training is mandatory? ›

Mandatory training is compulsory training that is determined essential by an organisation for the safe and efficient delivery of services. This type of training is designed to reduce organisational risks and comply with local or national policies and government guidelines.

How often should staff be trained in Prevent? ›

The designated safeguarding lead and any deputies should undergo training to provide them with the knowledge and skills required to carry out the role. The training should be updated every two years.

What is the 30 2 rule in CPR? ›

Give two breaths after every 30 chest compressions. If two people are performing CPR , give one to two breaths after every 15 chest compressions. Continue CPR until you see signs of life or until medical personnel arrive.

Do you give 2 ventilations before CPR? ›

Chest Compressions

The compression-ventilation ratio for 1- and 2-rescuer CPR is 15 compressions to 2 ventilations when the victim's airway is unprotected (not intubated) (Class IIb).

Do you give CPR if there is a pulse but no breathing? ›

If there is no sign of breathing or pulse, begin CPR starting with compressions. If the patient definitely has a pulse but is not breathing adequately, provide ventilations without compressions. This is also called "rescue breathing." Adults: give 1 breath every 5 to 6 seconds.

Who gets paid more GP or consultant? ›

Depending on the specialty, consultants may perform operations and extensive testing on patients. GPs do not participate in such activities. Due to their training, consultants often make more than GPs.

How much is a patient worth to a GP practice? ›

GP practices in England received an average of £155 per patient this financial year, official data has shown. In its annual report on NHS payments to general practice, published today, NHS Digital revealed that 7,001 practices in England were paid on average £155.46 per registered patient in 2019/20.

How many patients does a GP see a day? ›

GPs responding to the GPonline poll reported completing 46 patient contacts on average per full working day over the past year - 84% more than the 25 daily contacts the BMA says could be considered a safe limit.

Why are GPs leaving the NHS? ›

Frontline GPs

General practice is significantly understaffed, underfunded, and overworked and this is impacting on the care and services we're able to deliver to patients. 'The intensity and complexity of our workload is escalating whilst numbers of fully qualified, full-time GPs are falling.

How many GP appointments are unnecessary? ›

Doctors say 10 percent of GP prescriptions are unnecessary |

How many hours is a GP session? ›

Although a session is defined as four hours and 10 minutes, periods of duty do not need to be exact multiples of sessions.

How much does a GP receptionist earn UK? ›

The average gp receptionist salary in the United Kingdom is £21,615 per year or £11.08 per hour. Entry level positions start at £20,573 per year while most experienced workers make up to £25,350 per year.

What are the 3 to 5 most important qualities a medical receptionist should have? ›

Let's look at the skills that a medical receptionist requires to be effective in the workplace.
  • Organising. ...
  • Prioritising Task. ...
  • Customer Assistance. ...
  • Communication Abilities. ...
  • Multi-Tasking. ...
  • Problem Solving. ...
  • Technical Skills. ...
  • Time Management Skills.

What makes a good GP receptionist? ›

Customer service experience, time-management skills and the ability to multitask between incoming calls, face-to-face patient enquiries and daily administrative tasks is a must. There are a number of training bodies that offer “customer service and telephone skills” workshops up to advanced level.

What is mandatory training in the NHS? ›

Statutory training is required to ensure that the Trust is meeting any legislative duties. Mandatory training is an organisational requirement to limit risk and maintain safe working practice.

Why is training important for healthcare staff? ›

Training staff is important in health and social care to ensure the safety of people receiving and giving care and to maintain high standards of care quality. Training care staff helps engrain the necessary behaviours, attitudes, skills and knowledge to deliver high-quality, safe, person centred care.

What skills do NHS workers need? ›

These transferable skills include:
  • Caring for people.
  • People skills. ...
  • Knowledge of science and technology.
  • Organising and managing.
  • Information technology.
  • Practical skills and trades.
  • What about qualifications? ...
  • What if I don't have experience in the area I am interested in?

What are the six basic training strategies? ›

Six Steps to an Effective Training Program
  • Step 1: Define Your Training. ...
  • Step 2: Prepare Your Training. ...
  • Step 3: Practice Your Training. ...
  • Step 4: Deliver Your Training. ...
  • Step 5: Confirm Your Training. ...
  • Step 6: Audit Trainee Performance.
30 Sept 2015

How do you make a training session interesting? ›

Make Training Memorable
  1. Make learning fun. Why? ...
  2. Use humor. Humor helps keep enthusiasm at peak levels. ...
  3. Use attractive packaging. Use materials that are well-packaged and that communicate value. ...
  4. Encourage participation. Make the session lively by engaging participants in the learning process. ...
  5. Build self-esteem.

What 5 training programs should be conducted to employees? ›

11 Types of Employee Training Programs in 2022
  • Orientation Training. ...
  • Onboarding Training. ...
  • Compliance Training. ...
  • Product Training. ...
  • Leadership Training. ...
  • Technical Training. ...
  • Quality Assurance Training. ...
  • Sales Training.
2 Sept 2021

What are the 4 main types of training? ›

Types of Training – 4 Usual Types: Induction Training, Job Training, Training for Promotion and Refresher Process. Training is the systematic process of enhancing the job related skills, attitude and knowledge of personnel. It enables employees to develop and rise within the organisation, increase their market value.

› Articles ›

Employee training is defined as a planned set of activities for imparting knowledge to employees, such that it leads to a growth in job skills required for orga...
Simply stated, employee training is the responsibility of the organization. Employee training should incorporate the skills that are going to help employees do ...
Even though we all know how important it is to provide training for staff, some companies still fall behind when it comes to investing in employee development. ...

What qualities make a good GP? ›

able and willing to deal with common medical emergencies appropriately; able to prescribe effectively and with due thought to economy; able to keep clear, coherent and up-to-date medical records for each patient using a format that enables information to be easily identified for clinical and auditing purposes.

How do you attract more patients to your practice? ›

5 ways to attract more patients to your practice
  1. Establish an active online presence. ...
  2. Start a blog. ...
  3. Ask for referrals and reviews. ...
  4. Attract more patients to your practice by nurturing strong relationships your current patients. ...
  5. Upgrade to modern technology.
2 Aug 2017

What makes a good general practice? ›

To be a good GP requires a team: good medical partners, excellent administrative staff, an interprofessional primary health care team (ideally), responsive specialist colleagues and hospitals, a high-quality health care system, and healthy communities.

How can I be a happy GP? ›

What makes a good GP?
  1. Good Communication Skills.
  2. Open-Minded and Non-Judgemental.
  3. Ability to Deal with Uncertainty.
  4. Ability to Work Independently.
  5. An Interest in Continued Learning.
15 Feb 2017

Is a GP a hard job? ›

What advice would you have for anyone who wants to be a GP? It's a very good career but it's very hard. A lot of doctors think GPs don't really do very much but it's literally non-stop because even when you're not at the practice you have to constantly read up on new treatments and guidelines at home.

How much does an NHS GP earn? ›

If you're working as a specialty doctor you'll earn a basic salary of £50,373 to £78,759. If you are a specialist grade doctor you'll earn a basic salary of £80,693 to £91,584.

How can I get more patients in one day? ›

  1. Along with a desire to better accommodate and serve patients, seeing more patients per day pays off financially. ...
  2. Streamline Check-In. ...
  3. Use Scribes to Take Patient History. ...
  4. Rearrange Exam Order as Needed. ...
  5. Delegate. ...
  6. Manage Late Patients. ...
  7. Make Every Computer a Check-Out “Desk” ...
  8. Keep in Mind Further Improvements.
1 Nov 2017

What makes a good GP practice manager? ›

They must be able to communicate with a wide range of people from different walks of life and be able to lead and manage change. General Practice uses a variety of different IT systems so a Manager needs to have a good understanding of IT, its benefits and risks and be able to manage the implementation of new systems.

What are 2 characteristics of effective practice? ›

However, the integration and synthesis of evidence also reveals core features of inspiring practice and highlighted the strong emotional and reflective components that distinguish inspiring practice, including: positive relationships; good classroom/behaviour management; positive and supportive climate; formative ...


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