Delegates complained that current arrangements are bolted on without integration of the out-of-hours experience in the quest for competencies that underlies the objectives of GP training.
They laid the responsibility for ensuring that all OOH providers take part in training firmly on the shoulders of the deaneries and called for a national standardisation of the out-of-hours component of training.
Dr Rafi Taibjee, from the trainees subcommittee of the GPC, explained that a prescribed 72 hours of out-of-hours experience does not prepare trainees well enough. Some trainees find their sessions are unsupervised, but they are still signed off.
‘It is an utter disgrace. We feel very strongly as does the RCGP that it should be about competency to perform the out-of-hours role,' Dr Taibjee said.
He highlighted variability in the system with some deaneries in Scotland asking for three times as many hours experience before recommending CCT approval.
Dr Roberta King, Dorset LMC, who has been an educator for 15 years, argued that a specific out-of-hours curriculum defined by the RCGP was too prescriptive.
‘Registrars are already so anxious to jump through all the hoops that they are missing out on some of the subtle parts of general practice,' said Dr King.