Health Education England will invest in 250 extra foundation year two training posts to help expand ‘shortage specialties’ such as general practice in 2020/21, it has said.
HEE and NHS England announced the move in the new NHS People Plan published last week, which also said practices will be able to make use of salaried GPs who work flexibly across local areas via new 'banks' of doctors.
The plan said: ‘In 2020/21, HEE is investing in an extra 250 foundation year 2 posts, to enable the doctors filling them to grow the pipeline into psychiatry, general practice and other priority areas – notably cancer, including clinical radiology, oncology and histopathology.‘
This aims to expand ‘shortage specialties’, it added.
Meanwhile, HEE will also complete its roll out primary care ‘training hubs’ by the end of 2020/21 to ‘support the expansion of multidisciplinary teams’, it said.
It comes as the Government last week announced that GP trainee numbers in England have risen by 15% to reach ‘record-breaking’ numbers.
But despite recent success with GP trainee recruitment, the latest official figures have shown that the number of fully qualified full-time equivalent GPs dropped by 2.5% from March 2019 to March 2020.
And a major Pulse analysis earlier this year found that more must be done for the Government to successfully meet its targets.
Last year, the Government pledged to create 50 million more GP appointments per year by bringing 6,000 new doctors to general practice by 2024/25 - including by training 500 more GPs a year.
Meanwhile, Christopher Ecclestone, the ninth incarnation of the ‘Dr’ from the TV drama Dr Who, is one of several actors who are taking part in a charity event offering free medical role-play practise for trainee GPs.