The ICGP’s June Council was held virtually today (19th June 2021). The meeting was addressed by the former President of the Irish Medical Council, Dr Rita Doyle – “Keeping General Practice at the Top Table” was the theme of the presentation.

Dr Doyle, a GP in Bray, Co Wicklow, is a former President of the Irish College of General Practitioners, and a highly experienced GP leader and advocate for general practice. She was the first woman President of the Irish Medical Council.

She described her time as President of the Irish Medical Council and said one of the initiatives she was really proud of was “A GP for every NCHD” – in which every NCHD has their own GP. 

She described a new Local Complaints Initiative, which is at the early stages of development; this would enable patients with certain complaints to have them dealt with at local level, supporting both patient and doctor.

Dr Doyle spoke warmly of her time at the Medical Council and the dedicated and excellent staff she worked with.

In terms of the future of general practice, she highlighted the need for more GPs to serve the needs of our population with a workforce that is diverse in gender and race. 

“General Practice must lead from the front and be pro-active as well as responsive”, she said, emphasising the need for a strong relationship between general practice the HSE and the Department of Health.

“I have no doubt it is the greatest profession in medicine,” she said.

Council members and the wider membership in comments described her presentation as incisive, inspiring, and encouraging for GPs. 

The chairman of the Board, Dr John Farrell, said Dr Doyle’s work in the Medical Council was hugely beneficial for general practice. “She helped change the culture of the Medical Council for us all, and it takes a very special person to do that, “he said.

In conclusion, the President, Prof Tom O’ Dowd echoed Dr Doyle’s sentiments of the supportive nature of the role of the Medical Council, which is integral to the practice of medicine in Ireland in addition to its core regulatory function. 


19th June 2021. A recording of the ICGP Council meeting of 19th June will be available for members via the website.