There is a crisis in recruitment to less popular rural areas of Wales: a de-facto “head in the sand approach” which will not be solved without emergency immigration and/or training more and differently. Why not train doctors with General Practice as their base, instead of a city? They can still be part of a university and travel irregularly to that city for those parts of training which cannot be delivered by internet, GPs and DGH staff. Dissection and anatomy could be on computer (as it is already in some medical schools) and in the local pathology department. If students “live” in an area during their formative year, then they are more likely to stay, especially if recruited as graduates. A solution to these headlines is 15 years away…
Doctors have warned of a ‘looming crisis’ in Powys due to a lack of recruitment and retention of medical professionals
NEW measures are being rolled out in parts of rural Wales to ensure a “recruitment crisis” of GPs and nurses is avoided.
Powys Teaching Health Board says it plans to work closely with GP surgeries which are finding it increasingly difficult to appoint skilled staff.
Following a workshop held earlier this year, which was attended by a cross-section of primary and secondary care delegates, ideas have been developed to bring young medical professionals to the region to plug the shortfall.
A spokesman for the health board said: “We have tried to reflect the wide range of ideas that could be considered to try and improve the recruitment and retention of the medical and practice nursing workforce. These ideas, together with other suggestions, will be looked at by the health board to support practices in creating a plan for the future.”
Suggestions were presented during a debate on rural GP recruitment on the eve of the Rural Primary Care Conference held at Gregynog Hall, near Newtown.
Delegates suggested that a “rural medicine experience day” should be held in Powys for all second year medical students from Cardiff University.
There were also calls to increase incentives for medical students from Powys to train and work as GPs in the county.
They urged placements – or taster sessions – to be brought in for medical students early in their training with Powys medical practices, including exposure to minor injury units, district nursing and BASICS trained GPs.
Dr Paul Myers, chair of the Royal College of GPs in Wales, said the problem is ‘really serious’ and that the system needs greater investment
….The RCGP said that 23% of GPs in Wales are over 55, with many choosing early retirement due to the pressures and lack of resources… Dr Charlotte Jones, chair of the British Medical Association’s Welsh General Practitioners Committee, warned that general practice in Wales was in “intensive care”.
Dr Jones told the annual Local Medical Committee Conference: “I stand here before you today – a damsel in distress.
“Distressed because general practice in Wales is in intensive care.
“The tubes are in, the monitor pings away and the ventilator is working flat out. Will the patient survive? Who knows?
“The workforce situation, unless urgently addressed, will further exacerbate the problems we face. If it sounds like a crisis, smells like a crisis, feels like a crisis then it is a crisis and that needs to be said.
“Welsh Government cannot simply stick its head in the sand hoping it will go away.”…