Dr Josep Vidal-Alaball 2005
Who is it for?
GPs and any doctor with an interest in family planning.
When did you do it?
In 2002, during my GP registrar year.
Why did you do it?
In general practice we see many patients wanting advice on family planning and I wanted to have a diploma certifying my proficiency in this specialty. I like the way the diploma is assessed—it requires practical and theoretical training.
How much effort did it entail?
The diploma has two components; a basic theoretical course and a practical training.
There are several approved courses available around the country, which take place over three consecutive days. You organise your own practical training, which needs to be supervised by a faculty approved instructing doctor.
Is there an exam? (and fee)
No, this is the great thing about the DFFP; no exam is required to obtain the diploma. There is a fee to go to the theoretical course and you may need to pay a small fee to attend practical training.
Book your theoretical course early, as they are quite popular and GP registrars get priority. Organise your clinical placements in advance as it may take several months to attend all the required sessions.
Contact for further information
The Faculty of Family Planning and Reproductive Heath Care, 27 Sussex Place, Regent’s Park, London, NW1 4RG (020 7724 5669; http://www.ffprhc.org.uk/).
Was it worth it?
No exams required.
Good practical experience through direct patient contact.
Once you have the qualifications, you can earn extra income in family planning sessions.
Looks good on your CV.
Yearly subscriptions to the Faculty of Family Practice not as costly as with other memberships.
It is time consuming as you need to attend several training sessions in recognised training facilities and these may take place in the evenings.
It is strange to pay to see patients.
The logbook certifying your clinical experience is painful to fill in.
You need recertification every five years