'Deny medical graduates jobs'

Denying jobs to medical graduates might be needed to create an efficient NHS, says a leading health policy expert.

Professor Alan Maynard, from the University of York and chairman of York Hospital NHS Trust, argues that the rise of nurse practitioners and an increasing role for pharmacists will lead to an 'uncertain' job market for young doctors.

Writing in the BMJ, he argues that: 'The purpose of the NHS is to deliver patient care that is compassionate and efficient. It should not guarantee the employment of medical graduates, regardless of patient need, personal skills and finite resources.'

He adds that this fact is unaltered by the government's 'failure to plan efficiently' when it increased medical school places by 40 per cent.

But Professor Maynard's arguments were criticised by Graham Winyard, the retired director of the Severn and Wessex deanery.

jonn.elledge@haymarket.com

BMJ: 336; 990

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