With a shortage of GPs in England, there is a need to consider the career development
for new GPs to ensure that they remain in post. This study examines, by means of a
postal questionnaire survey, the views of GP registrars (GPRs) about their future
careers in Yorkshire, England. The response rate was 59%. One hundred and eighteen
(60%) responders were female, of whom 80 (39%) were planning to work part time. One
hundred and fifty-six (76%) GPRs planned to take up a specific job in primary care;
81 (40%) in a general practice rather than a primary care trust setting. One hundred
and seven (52%) had sought a different medical career prior to general practice and
113 (55%) did not feel well prepared to find a suitable practice. Interest in teaching
was expressed by 167 (82%) and in sub-specialisation by 170 (83%). One hundred and
seventeen (57%) GPRs said that their job choice was affected by domestic commitments.
More males than females intended to become a principal. Primary care trusts should
consider the profile and aspirations of the workforce and a more structured approach
to career guidance is required.