MP’s delight as funding secured for 50 places at Worcester medical school - The Worcester Observer

MP’s delight as funding secured for 50 places at Worcester medical school

Worcester Editorial 7th Oct, 2023   0

FUNDING for 50 places to study medicine at the Three Counties Medical School in Worcester has been secured following a long campaign by Worcester’s MP Robin Walker.

Health Secretary Steve Barclay announced the commitment to train British doctors in Worcester during a speech at Conservative Party Conference.

The confirmation of funded places is the final step in securing a pipeline of local doctors within the three counties and the medical school is headquartered at the long established University of Worcester which has been one of the fastest growing centres in the country for nurse training in recent years.

Mr Walker has been joined over the last few years by all of Worcestershire’s MPs, the Herefordshire and Worcestershire ICB, the Worcestershire Acute Trust, the Worcestershire Health and Care Trust and an array of trusts from across Herefordshire, Gloucestershire, Worcestershire and Dudley.

“Securing funded places is a huge breakthrough, it means our Three Counties Medical school can start to train the doctors of tomorrow and this will make a massive difference to both recruitment and retention in our local NHS,” Mr Walker said.

“It is a great credit to our University that they have continued to invest in the medical school even when there was significant uncertainty about funding for local students and to all the local NHS trusts for significantly supporting it in its early years.

Charitable and NHS funding enabled the first few local students to begin their studies there but with funding for 50 domestic students each year from 2024, that cohort can now rapidly expand to meet need in our local health service.

“After the publication of the long term workforce plan I pointed out to ministers and officials that all the ingredients for a successful medical school were in place – demand for placements in local NHS trusts, a University with a great track record in healthcare and a strong team and more than enough demand from local students with more than 1,000 applicants for places last year,” Mr Walker added.

“This feels like it has been a long time coming but today’s decision is truly welcome and will be a boost for our city, our county and the whole health economy of the three Counties.

“I am hugely grateful to all the councillors and colleagues who have supported this campaign and to the Ministers who have listened and acted.

Conservative parliamentary candidate for Worcester Marc Bayliss said: “It’s great to see the government listen to our local campaign to fund training places at the new medical school in the city.

“Our local NHS needs more medics and it’s great that people will be able to train here in Worcester. 50 paid places is a good start but I will be keeping up the pressure to increase the number in future.”

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