Third recruitment wave for 2016 GP training posts to close next week

The third and final wave of recruitment to GP training posts for 2016 is set to close next week, with the NHS aiming to fill more than 600 posts that remained vacant after two recruitment rounds.

GP practice: many vacancies in training posts for GPs

Applications for 2016 posts will close on Thursday 3 December, Health Education England (HEE) has said.

Around a fifth of GP training posts - 632 in total - were unfilled after two waves of recruitment this year, but third-wave applications have come in faster in 2015 than in the same period last year.

Last year was the first to see a third round of recruitment to GP training posts, and just 72 out of 451 posts were filled.

Map: GP trainee vacancies

In 2015, 3,124 posts were available in total, and of these 2,492 had been filled after two recruitment rounds, leaving 632 vacancies.

As part of the 10-point GP workforce plan agreed by the DH, NHS England, Health Education England and GP organisations, HEE has used a series of online advertising videos to try to boost uptake of training posts.

HEE chief executive Professor Ian Cumming told MPs several weeks ago that this year's third round of recruitment for GP training posts had seen 676 people apply so far, compared to around 100 over the same period in 2014.

The GPC has said that it believes the government target of recruiting an extra 5,000 GPs by 2020 is impossible given slow uptake of training posts.

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