The University of Cumbria and Imperial College London are working in collaboration to launch a new graduate entry medical school, with its campus being based in Carlisle.
The aim of the new school is to improve healthcare in local communities by training new doctors for Cumbria and North West England, which has struggled with staff retention regionally.
First enrollment of students is due to take place in autumn 2025 and will look to strengthen the University of Cumbria’s pre-existing expertise in the education of nurses, midwives and allied health professionals.
Recruitment and retention of medical staff in Cumbria and the North West is notoriously difficult and still poses a significant challenge. The new partnership comes in the hope of improving the number of medical professionals serving in their local communities.
University of Cumbria Vice Chancellor Professor Julie Mennell said: “In addition to attracting and retaining new doctors for Cumbria and North West England, the joint medical school will allow us to develop collaborative research programmes in areas such as health and social inequalities.
“The University of Cumbria was established to play a significant role in increasing higher education participation and addressing the higher-level education and skills needs of Cumbria and the region. This continues to drive us, and we look forward to working with colleagues at Imperial College London to realise a new medical school in North Cumbria.”
The course has been specifically designed to meet the needs of the region and will look to enforce a community focus during education.
Once graduated, students will be embedded into the local integrated care system, enriching the local healthcare system with more trained healthcare professionals.
Professor Liz Hughes MBE, Deputy Medical Director (Undergraduate Education), Health Education England, added: “The most important resource the NHS has is its people and we are very pleased to be able to support development of these proposals that will create a new medical school helping to train more doctors.
“It is a great opportunity to work with the University of Cumbria and Imperial College London to help reduce health inequalities by better meeting local patient needs through delivery of high-quality clinical placements and improving access to the medical workforce in this area both now and in the future.”
The University of Cumbria and Imperial College London are also planning a range of other local collaborative research programmes in the North West and London.
It’s not too late to join us for today’s (7th April) NHE365: Workforce event where we will be joined by expert panelists to discuss topics such as recruitment, workforce management, retention and the mental wellbeing of staff.
Photo credits: University of Cumbria