Moving into a medical career is being encouraged by a new funding package from the Scottish Government. Three Scottish Universities are involved in ScotGEM: Scotland’s first Graduate Medical Programme which is designed to meet the current and future needs of the NHS.
The University of the Highlands and Islands, St Andrews and Dundee will deliver the 4 year course starting in the academic year 2018/19 subject to approval from the General Medical Council.
A bursary of £4,000 per year will be made available to students on ScotGEM. The optional grant, worth £16,000 over the four year course, will be payable to students who agree to work in Scotland’s NHS for a certain time period. For each £4,000 claimed, there will be a commitment to one year of service.
In addition to the return-of-service bursary, the Scottish Government will pay the tuition fees for eligible students. Currently, eligible students for free tuition are those assessed as “home funded” for fee purposes (Scottish domiciled/EU students).
ScotGEM will have 40 places and is open to people who already hold a degree who want to move into medicine as a career. After completing the degree, graduates will then complete foundation and specialty training before starting work as fully-qualified doctors. For graduates opting to receive a bursary, the ‘return of service’ commitment begins at the start of their Foundation Training.
The programme will have a particular focus on recruitment of Scottish graduates to increase the likelihood of trainees remaining in Scotland, particularly in more rural and remote areas.
Professor David Crossman, Dean of Medicine at the University of St Andrews, said:
“Graduate Entry Medicine courses have proven highly effective for training doctors who bring their experience and education from their first degree and often experience work outside the University and health sector.”
“The development of ScotGEM is very good news for the people of Scotland and Scottish medicine. I am delighted that the University of St Andrews has been chosen to be part of this development.”
ScotGEM takes advantage of the expertise of three universities and four health boards to offer an outstanding medical training. It is designed to develop doctors interested in a career as a generalist practitioner within NHS Scotland, including a focus on rural medicine and healthcare improvement. (Dundee University)
Health Secretary in the Scottish Government Shona Robison said:
“ScotGEM is an entirely new concept for Scotland, with a particular focus on rural medicine and general practice. These are two priority recruitment areas for Scotland’s NHS, and they are also extremely rewarding career paths.”
Reporter: Fiona Grahame
For more information
Applications open in September but anyone interested must register for the preliminary aptitude tests GAMSAT and UKCAT. Registration for GAMSAT closes on 4 August.
More details of the ScotGEM course: