More than nine out of 10 GP training posts in Wales filled

More than nine out of 10 GP training posts in Wales have been filled after the first round of recruitment for 2017, the Welsh health department has announced.

GPC Wales chair Dr Charlotte Jones (Photo: Ray Farley)
GPC Wales chair Dr Charlotte Jones (Photo: Ray Farley)

A total of 124 out of 136 posts available in 2017 (91%) have been filled, compared with a 75% fill rate in 2016.

Earlier this year the Welsh government announced that the fill rate for GP training posts after a first wave of advertising was 84%. The 91% fill rate has been reached after a second wave of advertising.

The increased uptake of GP training posts in Wales has been hailed by the government as a major success for its campaign to promote health careers in the country.

GP incentives

Financial incentives targeted at underdoctored areas have helped to drive uptake in four areas - North Wales West, North Wales East, Ceredigion and Pembrokeshire - up to 100%.

Trainees recruited in this round will start their training in August as a second recruitment round begins for posts that begin from February 2018.

Welsh health secretary Vaughan Gething said: 'Improving access to GP and other local health services is one of my top priorities. Ensuring we have the right staff in place in the right places is crucial.

'So I’m really pleased our This is Wales: Train, Work, Live campaign has resulted in a significant increase in the number of trainee GPs coming to Wales – with 91% of training places filled already after round one. I’m particularly pleased our financial incentives have resulted in all training places being filled in some of the areas that have traditionally found it difficult to recruit.'

GP training posts

GPC Wales chair Dr Charlotte Jones: 'We welcome the news that 91% of GP training places in Wales have so far been filled. Unfilled training places place an additional burden on GPs who are already facing unprecedented pressures.

'These figures are a positive step in the right direction, and the financial incentives offered to all trainees towards their speciality examinations and the separate incentives given to support training and remaining in certain parts of Wales, have no doubt played a crucial role.

'We would like to see these initiatives developed further, where appropriate, to ensure we can attract GPs into training and look to expand upon the number of training places, where there is demand to do so.'

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