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£20k ‘golden handshakes’ to be expanded to 200 GP trainees

More trainee GPs are set to be given £20,000 ‘golden hellos’ to work in parts of the country that have had difficulty recruiting, health secretary Jeremy Hunt will announce today.

Practices that have seen training places remain vacant for a number of years will be able to offer trainees a financial incentive under an expansion of the 'Targeted Enhanced Recruitment Scheme' (TERS) in 2018, which will offer up to 200 trainees a one-off payment of £20,000 to take on a training position. 

TERS was launched in 2016 offering 109 GP trainee places and expanded earlier this year to 144 GP trainee places in certain areas.

The scheme was revealed by Pulse to be one of the flagship measures for tackling stubbornly low uptake of GP training places.

TERS accounted for half of the 200 extra doctors recruited to GP training after two rounds of recruitment last year, while training boards in Wales launched their own version of the scheme last year.

The Department of Health has also asked HEE to ensure that many of the 1,500 additional medical training places that are to be funded from next year are located in these hard to recruit areas.

Last year, the health secretary announced plans to fund an additional 1,500 medical training places from September 2018, which it has proposed would go to medical schools that aim to boost GP trainee numbers by exposing students to general practice

Speaking at the RCGP conference today in Liverpool, Mr Hunt will say that ‘the profession is under considerable pressure at the moment’.

He will add: ‘By introducing targeted support for vulnerable areas and tackling head on critical issues such as higher indemnity fees and the recruitment and retention of more doctors, we can strengthen and secure general practice for the future.’

Professor Wendy Reid, director of education and quality & national medical director for HEE, said the organisation has ‘honoured its commitment’ to invest in GP training by increasing the number of training positions and spending £500m a year on GP training.

She said: ‘More doctors than ever before are entering general practice and this is illustrated by the GP training fill rate figures for 2016 which at 3,019 is the highest number ever.’

Readers' comments (9)

  • er....lets do the maths here...... £20k..... over a career of 40 yrs.....£500 per year. Ok, if upfront and fully invested you might make £1k per annum on the lump sum at 5% interest.
    Difference between Australia or Canada and UK perhaps £100k per year LESS in the UK.
    Nothing to stop someone taking the money for 3 years training, then clearing off abroad.
    This might help them fill training posts, but won't stop doctors emigrating

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  • Paying money to attract trainees !!
    This is the state of General Practice in UK.
    I would think twice before taking this offer and if you do you will be heading for a disaster.

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  • Usually paid over 3 years of training .ie 20000 over 36 months is 555.55 before tax
    So at best 275 £ per month to move to a new area

    I can see a gold rush there !hahah

    Pity profession has come to this ;(

    I'm sorry mr hunt don't think many will fall for this if they have basic knowledge in maths

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  • Underwhelming MR Hunt.

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  • It makes you want to weep .
    When trainees see the avalanche of GPs scrambling to get out they know the job is a stinker! They need to retain the GPs in post to make the job attractive - throwing money at it in a shockingly desperate -" please anyone ??" attempt to attract new recruits makes it look even more crap !

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  • So after Tax it's £10k. Last move I did cost over £1k removal, several thousand on solicitors and much more in stamp duty. Looks like applicants could still be out of pocket.

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  • Mr Hunt reusing the same manure to try and fertilise the garden.Sadly Mr Hunt you have already poisoned it.

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  • Wrong approach. General practice has gone from being a job I'd have wanted to do without being paid to being a job you couldn't pay me enough to want to do. Let us be doctors again and everything might start to fall into place.

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  • I actually think its a pretty good idea if someone already wants to be a GP and has no particular ties to an area.

    It might not sound like a lot to some but for me at the start of training would have been very useful!

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