Trainee doctors could see the demands of their education change as the Joint Royal Colleges of Physicians Training Board (JRCPTB) has published new guidelines.
The new quality criteria aims to improve educational training for doctors, while also increasing the standard of learning environments and boosting the safety and experience of the patients they will eventually be responsible for.
The amendments come after the results of a 2013 survey found that there were many weak areas in the training programme for doctors. According to the findings from JRCPTB, there were problems such as heavy service demands, which were leading to a reduction in the number of training opportunities. In addition, the study also highlighted a wide variability in the quality of supervision, with some trainees even being deterred from a career in acute medical specialties after their experience during core medical training (CMT).
JRCPTB's quality criteria were developed after a broad consultation with clinical educators, as well as doctors currently in training and covers the structure of the entire programme. The criteria have been grouped into four domains and are classified as either ‘core’ or ‘best practice’.
While the criteria are aspirational, it is hoped that many of them will be implemented across the UK, with the intention being to develop "a culture of excellence" in CMT, with all trusts and health boards having at least met the specified ‘core’ criteria by the end of 2016.
They focus on the delivery, flexibility of the programme, as well as the required standard of supervision and engagement with trainees. One of the obligations of the criteria is that trainees must undertake a minimum of 40 outpatient clinics, while shift patterns should be structured to ensure trainees are present at relevant post-take ward rounds and handovers.
It is hoped that these changes will improve the quality of trained doctors, while also boosting patient care.
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