Skip to main content

Medical Training

Volume 448: debated on Thursday 29 June 2006

To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland how many medical students who are studying in Northern Ireland will (a) be unable to continue their studies and (b) be unable to take up positions of employment in Northern Ireland as a result of the new visa regulations pertaining to international medical students; and if he will make a statement. (79762)

The information is as follows.

(a) All overseas medical students will be able to continue their medical studies, as training up to registration with the General Medical Council (GMC) is not affected by the new immigration rules.

(b) Non-European economic area (EEA) doctors already in training posts will now be considered as being employed rather than in training, and therefore will need to meet the work permit provisions. Transitional arrangements are in place for those who have been offered a post starting on or before 4 August 2006.

The new immigration rules introduced by the Home Office that came into effect on 3 April 2006 will not prevent doctors from training in the United Kingdom, but are designed to bring the employment of doctors into line with other sectors of the UK economy.

To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland how many (a) nurse and (b) doctor training places were available in Northern Ireland in each of the last 10 years; how many people entered training in each year; and how many people qualified in each year. (78719)

The number of (a) nurses and (b) doctors who commenced training and completed training in each of the last 10 years is presented in the following tables. All available training places have been filled in each of the 10 years.

Table (a1): Number of pre-registration nursing students who commenced training in each of the last 10 years

Academic year

Number commencing training

2005-06

815

2004-05

851

2003-04

811

2002-03

763

2001-02

643

2000-01

484

1999-2000

482

1998-99

460

1997-98

460

1996-97

341

Table (a2): Number of pre-registration nursing students who completed training in each of the last 10 years

Academic year

Number qualifying

2005-06

1n/a

2004-05

662

2003-04

571

2002-03

471

2001-02

410

2000-01

378

1999-2000

303

1998-99

424

1997-98

376

1996-97

230

1 The completing figures for academic year 2005-06 are not yet available. 2 Students completed training via the five colleges of nursing for 1996-97. Note: University of Ulster completed the above number. Source: Queens University Belfast, University of Ulster and Open University

The following table shows the number of medical places available in the period requested.

Table (b1): Queen’s University Belfast (Home and EU) undergraduate medical students/places

Academic year

Number of places/students

2005-06

250

2004-05

188

2003-04

169

2002-03

170

2001-02

169

2000-01

161

1999-2000

160

1998-99

154

1997-98

169

1996-97

152

The numbers of medical students qualifying in each year is set out in the following table.

Table (b2): Queen’s Home and EU medical graduates

Academic year

Number of students

2005-06

1n/a

2004-05

148

2003-04

162

2002-03

151

2001-02

169

2000-01

139

1999-2000

141

1998-99

149

1997-98

135

1996-97

137

1 The figures for 2005-06 will not be available until mid-July.