UofG launches innovative scheme to train next generation of Primary Care leaders

The University of Glasgow is to launch an innovative scheme that will equip selected medical students with the requisite skills and experience to become the next generation of leaders of Primary Care in Scotland.

The new Community Orientated Medical Experience Track (COMET) will see medical students gain enriched and immersive exposure to primary care within both urban and rural settings.

Students walking through the quadrangle during graduation

The Scottish Government will fund 30 new places on the COMET scheme.

Professor Dame Anna Dominiczak, Vice Principal and Head of the College of Medical, Veterinary and Life Sciences, said: “At the University of Glasgow Medical School, we are committed to providing our students with world class medical education in a superb clinical environment.

“We are delighted that this new initiative will allow a greater number of talented young people to fulfil their potential and enter the medical workforce equipped with the skills they need to thrive as 21st century General Practitioners.

“We have developed an exciting programme of medical training, which engages colleagues from Primary Care across the west of Scotland with long-term benefits for clinical medicine and public health in Scotland.”

The Scottish Government announced it will fund 85 additional places at the Universities of Aberdeen, Edinburgh and Glasgow through innovative new undergraduate medical courses like the University’s COMET scheme.

Each of the new courses will focus on general practice, supporting the Scottish Government’s aims to increase the number of GPs by at least 800 over the next decade.

Health Secretary Shona Robison said: “The innovative proposals from Aberdeen, Edinburgh and Glasgow universities will see 85 new places to specifically promote general practice as a long-term career for young doctors, and allow experienced healthcare professionals who may be interested in becoming doctors to enter medicine.

“The courses will include more involvement of GPs in teaching and assessment and enhanced GP placements in deprived and rural settings.

“While our new GP contract will make general practice a more attractive career by cutting workloads and giving doctors more time with patients, these new medical places are a further step we are taking to train and retain more family doctors in Scotland.”

The Scottish Government’s National Health and Social Care Workforce Plan commits to creating additional undergraduate medical places and medical schools were asked to put forward proposals for new courses with a focus on general practice.

60 of the additional places will begin in 2019-20, 25 places will begin in 2020-21. Between 2015-6 and 2020-21 the Scottish Government will have increased the number of medical places in Scottish universities from 848 to 1038 - a rise of 22% - including funding Scotland’s first Graduate Entry Medical programme and widening access places.

Enquiries: ali.howard@glasgow.ac.uk or elizabeth.mcmeekin@glasgow.ac.uk / 0141 330 6557 or 0141 330 4831

First published: 1 June 2018

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