463 Primary Care Reform in China: Implication for General Practice Education and Training for the Largest Population in the World

Thursday, April 26, 2012
Abay Poster Exhibition and Hall (Millennium Hall)
Harry HX Wang, MSc The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong
Jia Ji Wang Guangzhou Medical University, China
Martin CS Wong The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong
Sian M. Griffiths The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong
Background: General Practice (GP) has achieved remarkable progress in China since its introduction in the late 1980s. Under the current primary care reform, the Ministry of Health has introduced a nationwide system of retraining hospital-based doctors to become GPs. In addition to developing a medical education curriculum for GPs, the Division of Medical Education in the ministry has also set standards and guidelines for other training programs in the community health services.

Methods: In this presentation we aimed to summarize the successful experience and also the potential challenges in general practice education and training in Guangdong province where the program was first launched in China. It is an open window for primary care research where the Education and Training Centre for General Practitioners takes a leading role in providing qualified primary care professionals and workforce to meet the requirements of the new reforms in China.

Results: As the forefront of translating national policy into practice, a holistic standardized training curriculum, accreditation and certification through a variety of concurrent programs at multi-levels were established including 1) undergraduate and postgraduate curriculum for medical students specializing in General Practice, 2) on-the-job continuing training for current hospital doctors to be GPs, 3) full-time standardized training for managerial staffs and community nurse managers, and 4) general health service management training for medical professionals in public health.

Conclusion: The current primary care reform in China which aims to deliver an affordable and effective healthcare service to the whole population at the community level requires substantial primary care professionals through General Practice education and training. The review of the current evidence will guide future directions of primary care and general practice for China to strengthen capacity building in public health for world’s largest population and echo the WHO policy on enhancing primary care.

Learning Objectives: Strengthen capacity building for public health through general practice education and training.