Rural areas leave training places unfilled
28th May 2016
Training programmes in parts of Somerset have only filled 30% their training places after the second round of recruitment. Speaking at the LMC Conference in London, Somerset LMC representative Dr Tim Horlock told delegates that in his region the changes to application processes have had a knock-on effect on recruiting new medical professionals. As part of the changes to boost GP recruitment in 2016, Health Education England allowed practices to express geographical preferences at a more detailed level. This means trainees now apply for a GP programme, such as in Coventry or Warwickshire, rather than a region, like West Midlands.
But Dr Horlock remarked upon pressures on recruitment to areas without ‘cities or league football teams’ even more acute. “Almost 100% of people who are employed locally have been trainees locally. Now things have been centralised, and it has not gone well for us. After round 2 we’ve only filled 30% of our training places, despite the quality of training...I feel that the centralisation of allocation means that small places...have been denied the trainees that give us a glimmer of hope for the future.”