As set out in ‘Stepping forward to 2020/21: The mental health workforce plan for England’, published in July 2017, Health Education England (HEE) is working with the Royal College of Psychiatrists to address low fill rates at core and higher specialty training experienced in parts of the country, and low direct transition rates from core to higher specialty training.
Nationally, this includes offering doctors greater exposure to psychiatry during foundation training, greater flexibility throughout training, and reducing attrition rates.
Supported by HEE, the Royal College of Psychiatrists launched the “Choose Psychiatry” campaign in 2017, encouraging doctors to take up psychiatry for their specialty training. Building on the ‘Enhancing Junior Doctors Working Lives’ report, HEE will explore flexibility throughout the training pathway, and work with the College to examine different training options including run-through training.
Furthermore, the Government has confirmed 1,500 new medical school places in England, with 630 new places available this September. The allocation of 1,000 of these places was prioritised to universities that can best meet the Government’s objectives, one of which was increasing the number of students who go on to work in psychiatry, with a focus on priority locations including rural and coastal – and included a brand new medical school in Chelmsford.