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Wednesday 26th October 2016

Trainee doctor numbers to be cut

6th December 2012

The Department of Health has revealed it is to cut the number of trainee doctors in England because of an over-supply of medics.


That will see a 2% reduction in medical school places – down by 124 – in 2013-14 with the figure likely to be reviewed again for the 2015 intake and every three years after that up to 2025.

Data analysed by the Health and Education National Strategic Exchange and the Centre for Workforce Intelligence indicated that by 2025 there could be in the region of 10,000 too many trained hospital doctors in the NHS.

A consequence of that, suggests the Department of Health, is a “brain drain” with doctors seeking work abroad.

Health minister Dan Poulter said: “The government is taking action now so that patients’ needs will continue to be met in 2025, and money is not wasted training more doctors than the NHS requires, who could end up having to go abroad to find work.”

Despite the cutback, there will still be about 27,000 more doctors in 2025 than there were in 2011.

The review was chaired by Sir Graeme Catto and NHS medical director Sir Bruce Keogh.

Sir Graeme said: “This report is an important piece of work which looks ahead at the future medical and dental workforce needs of the NHS and enables us to plan to ensure that those workforce needs are met.”

He said such steps would help “maintain the standards of care that the public rightly expect”, adding that he was pleased that ministers had accepted the recommendations.


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