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Independents' Day

HEE deal with Caribbean medical school aims to recruit GP trainees

Health education bosses have drawn up an agreement with a Caribbean medical school to encourage graduates to take up general practice and psychiatry training in the NHS in England.

Under the deal, it is expected that between 50 and 100 medical graduates from Grenada’s St George’s University will begin postgraduate training in the NHS every year, starting from this autumn.

They will complete one or two postgraduate foundation years, depending on prior experience, followed by three-year specialty training to become a GP or psychiatrist.

The deal, put together by Health Education England, forms part of an initiative being run by HEE aimed at recruiting overseas doctors who want to train in general practice or psychiatry in the NHS.

A total of 16 graduates from Grenada’s St George’s University are due to take part in the initiative, called the Widening Access to Specialty Training (WAST) Programme, over the next seven months.

Those on the programme will be posted to a region in England based on areas that have the highest shortages in the two specialties. It is expected they will mainly be assigned to the Midlands, east, north and south west of England, as well as Yorkshire and the Humber.

HEE chief executive Ian Cumming said: ‘Our role is to ensure the health workforce in England can meet the challenges faced by the NHS, which includes the provision of services in underserved areas.

‘We are very impressed that graduates provided by SGU are of the high standard demanded by the NHS; I look forward to the first intake arriving in 2018.’

Dr G Richard Olds, president of SGU, said: ‘Our extensive network of partner universities and teaching hospitals around the world, including in England, ensures our students receive a comprehensive education in a range of clinical environments.

‘This is reflected in the fact that we are the only Caribbean medical school to enter into an agreement with HEE, enabling our graduates to apply for the WAST programme.’

He added: ‘One of our central aims is to find ways to train doctors in the areas they are needed most.

‘This agreement, which will encourage our graduates to train in family medicine and psychiatry in areas of England with the greatest need, is one example of how we are making a significant positive impact around the world.’

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Readers' comments (9)

  • ..positive impact? missed the point!

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  • Have these gentle folk been made aware of emigration rules?

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  • National Hopeless Service

    Have these gentle folk been warned they are going from a lush, warm island bathed by the Caribbean sea to an inner city practice that no one else will work in.

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  • Folks...don't come here! Have you heard of the Windrush generation? You will just be used and dumped.

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  • They do have the internet and the BBC News in the West Indies! I'm sure their deported grandparents will let them know too!

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  • Trying to fill the bucket whilst the hole in the bottom has not been fixed, good luck with that.

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  • Desperate and immoral stealing doctors from poorer developing countries.

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  • SGU is my university. The majority of graduates are North American and Canadian. They all sit the USMLE! So good luck attracting them to the NHS. The only reason I applied to the NHS after graduation was my British passport.

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  • AlanAlmond

    Leave the sunny Caribbean to work for the NHS in the UKs intercity industrial wastelands? Good luck with that one. ‘Oh they won’t be needed in London...we’ve already got more that we can eat down here...send them to the provences, we can use the money we save on retaining U.K. staff on an extension to the Jubilee line’

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