Dr Tonya Constantine is a GP & principal at the Panaceum Group. She has a passion for rural health and teaching the next generation of doctors.
– “I would like an appointment with Dr Y, Johnny has had a fever for three days now.”
– “Dr Y isn’t available, but Johnny will be able to see the Registrar, Dr Z today.”
I’m sure many patients wonder, “what is a registrar?”
At the Panaceum Group, you may find Registrars whom are qualified doctors with at least two years experience (some have much more experience). They want to be GPs and have embarked on a training programme which takes 3-4 years.
Their training varies depending on the stage, but is quite extensive in the basic term – it includes seven days of training in Perth, three days in the Midwest, and 2-3 hours/week of in-practice teaching. In addition to this, they will have two visits from an outside doctor who will sit in on their consultations for a day. This is all within six months!
We also have doctors whom we call PGPPP’s, as they are in a Prevocational General Practice Placement Programme. These doctors are earlier in their career pathways, and while working in the hospital setting, want to get a ‘taste’ of general practice. Our PGPPP’s work half-time at the Panaceum Group and half-time in the Emergency Department, so you may recognise them if you ever visit the ED!
I’m sure that you notice the senior GP’s mentoring the doctors in training. Sometimes your doctor may be interrupted by a phone call discussing a case, or may be seen entering another room to review a patient. It is all part of the balance of training doctors whilst keeping patients safe.
We hope that by having a good experience working at the Panaceum Group, these doctors will make a decision to stay in Geraldton, ensuring a supply of doctors for the future. And that has to be good for the community!