Royal Australian College of Ophthalmologists and Royal Australian College of General Practitioners National GP Eye Skills Workshops: colleges and divisions reskilling general practice
Jackson, C.; de Jong, I.; Glasson, W.
Clinical and Experimental Ophthalmology 28(5): 347-349
ISSN/ISBN: 1442-6404 PMID: 11097280 DOI: 10.1046/j.1442-9071.2000.00337.x
Little formal eye skills training has historically been available to Australian general practitioners at undergraduate or postgraduate levels. The development of the National GP Eye Skills Workshop was a joint initiatve of the Royal Australian Colleges of General Practice and Ophthalmology, to enhance the skills of Australian general practitioners in a range of important ocular examination and procedural areas. Workshops were run in eight Queensland Divisions of General Practice in 1998. Between two and 10 local ophthalmologists in each divisional area were involved ether in the workshop programme or in the recruitment of patients for the patient assessment module. Workshops were run on weekends and included modules on vision testing and disease screening in children and adults, ophthalmoscopy, assessment for glaucoma and diabetic retinopathy, incision of chalazions, removal of corneal foreign bodies, ocular first aid, implementing eye assessment in busy general practice, and a patient assessment clinic. A questionnaire was administered which was comprised of sections relating to the format of the workshop, new skills and concepts learnt, learning exceptions, and perception of future ability to treat/scan/assess for eye conditions in general practice. The questionnaire was completed by 91% of participants. Participants strongly supported the impact of the workshop on their ability to detect and treat eye problems in their practices, and refer where appropriate to an ophthalmologist. They also rated highly all individual aspects of the programme in terms of impact on their delivery of general practitioner eye care. The results illustrate the comprehensive success of the workshop programme in format, content, relevance and delivery.