Medical trainees lack adequate supervision

Medical trainees in England are being asked to practise beyond their level of competence and without adequate supervision, a wide-ranging review into the Foundation Programme has warned.

Mr Dickson: the GMC will address the recommendations about the regulation of the Foundation Programme
Mr Dickson: the GMC will address the recommendations about the regulation of the Foundation Programme

The review, which was led by Professor John Collins, Nuffield department of surgical sciences at the University of Oxford, said the Foundation Programme had ‘many strengths’.

But he also raised concerns that trainees ‘across England’ are being asked to practise beyond their level of competence.

'Foundation for Excellence’ said this gives the trainee the message that suboptimal care is condoned and puts patients ‘at unnecessary risk’.

The review set out 33 recommendations, including a call for the GMC to establish clear guidelines on the level of supervision required by trainees at each stage of their training by 2013.

Professor Collins said: ‘We have found that the Foundation Programme has many strengths.

‘But there are questions over key aspects of design, content, safety and quality. A number of changes to the current system have therefore been recommended to tackle these problems in a spirit of evolution not revolution.’

GMC chief executive Niall Dickson said the GMC will address the recommendations about the regulation of the Foundation Programme.

He said: ‘The two years spent in the Foundation Programme are fundamental to a new doctor’s training and have a huge influence on their future career.

'We look forward to working closely with our partners in taking this important work forward, so that young doctors can continue to lay the foundations for good, safe, medical practice in a supportive, educational environment.’

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