The journal was established in 1953 as the College of General Practitioners' Research Newsletter. It was renamed Journal of the College of General Practitioners in 1960 (from 1967 Journal of the Royal College of General Practitioners), before obtaining its current name in 1990. Since 2013, the journal's digital content is hosted by HighWire Press. Authors may choose to publish their articles
as open access. The journal publishes editorials on clinical and policy topics, debate and analysis, clinical guidance, and a section called "Life & Times" which contains reviews of art, books, and film as well as viewpoints, polemic, and entertainment. In the course of its history, the journal has had seven editors: the present editor-in-chief is Roger Jones. The editorial office and the journal team are located at the Royal College of General Practitioners.
Relevant Topics in General Science