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I report my experiences in learning general practice as a vocational trainee with 12 months divided between two general practices at the end of a three-year course. A parallel between developmental milestones and a trainee's educational development is drawn and the reasons which brought patients to me as a trainee are analysed.
I suggest the trainee year should be a dynamic time of learning and that trainees should be in an educational environment including progressively less authority. The trainer/trainee relationship, like the doctor/patient relationship, is all important.