In Australia, the acquisition of the knowledge and skills, both personal and professional, that lead to vocational registration as a quality general practitioner occurs within the apprenticeship model. Our GP registrars learn and grow in confidence through consulting with patients in our practices, though unlike the hospital setting, much of this is behind closed doors.

As clinicians, our fundamental responsibility is the safety of our patients. So, it is quite natural to feel a little anxious about what is happening between the GP registrar and their patient behind the consulting room door.

GP supervisors employ a range of support mechanisms to ensure both patients (and GP registrars!) remain safe. Case discussions form the basis of many GP supervisor/ GP registrar interactions. There are a number of case based discussion (CBD) tools that can be used to structure these discussions. This guide provides GP supervisors with an explanation of how to incorporate one such mechanism into their supervision toolkit; that of random case analysis (RCA).

In this guide, RCA has been applied to the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP) domains, but the model may equally be applied to the Australian College of Rural and Remote Medicine (ACRRM) GP registrars. The use of RCA as a supervision method transcends individual curricula and sits squarely in the domain in which all GP supervisors are guided; that of keeping patients and colleagues safe.

RCA is relevant to GP registrars at all stages of their training and may be particularly useful for supervision of:

All GP registrars, whether ACRRM or RACGP, are required to receive three hours of formal teaching from you as their GP supervisor in their first general practice term. The use of RCA helps to identify and support what the GP registrar knows, and does not know, in a manner that is consistent and non-threatening. We hope you find this resource useful.