Medical students

350 more medical school places announced to boost future NHS workforce

As part of ongoing work to deliver the NHS Long Term Workforce Plan, the government has announced the official allocation of 350 additional medical school places in England for the 2025/26 academic year.

One of the plan’s key commitments is to double the number of medical school places in England to 15,000 by 2031, as well as level up the geographic training of places to help tackle unequal access to services.

While places have been allocated by the Office for Students across the country, it has used data provided by NHS England (NHSE) to target distribution disparities and under-doctored areas, leading to substantial increases at:

Gillian Keegan comment

NHSE’s CEO, Amanda Pritchard, said: “This is a hugely important moment for the NHS Long Term Workforce Plan and marks one of the first steps towards our ambition to train more doctors in England than ever before – the record expansion will help us boost care for patients right across the country.

“The ambitious blueprint for our workforce, is a once-in-a-generation opportunity to put NHS staffing on a sustainable footing, particularly as we continue to adapt to new and rising demand for health services.”

The Department of Health and Social Care says that with the allocation places for this year and next, along with medical apprenticeship places, it is on track to exceed current plans.

“Thanks to the government’s plan for a faster, simpler and fairer healthcare system, the NHS now has record funding and a record number of doctors,” said health secretary, Victoria Atkins.

She added: “I want to make sure that we will have the medical professionals we will need in the years ahead.

“That’s why we are delivering the NHS Long Term Workforce Plan and doubling the number of medical school places, so we can train the next generation of world-class doctors to offer patients the highest-quality care.”

Image credit: iStock

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NHE May/June 2024

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