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Doctors: Training

Volume 461: debated on Friday 15 June 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what steps she is taking to safeguard patient care at the beginning of August 2007 when doctors in training will all change jobs. (135693)

Not all doctors in training will change jobs on the same date at the beginning of August. Arrangements for 2007 will reflect current practice as most doctors at the level equivalent to the senior house officer grade will start in the first week of August, while doctors at the equivalent of the specialist registrar grade will have staggered start dates.

To ensure service is maintained at the beginning of August and patient care is not compromised, NHS Employers are working with trusts to plan now for managing the transition in the period after 1 August. These plans include advertising locum posts on NHS jobs to fill training posts and using extensions to contracts or service posts.

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what the reasons were for abandoning the policy of staggered changeover dates for doctors in training posts. (135694)

The previous policy has not been abandoned. Arrangements for 2007 will reflect current practice.

In the past most doctors at senior house officer (SHO) level changed over in the first week of August. The doctors at specialist registrar (SpR) level traditionally change over in July, September or October.

New specialty training programmes commence in August 2007. Most doctors at the level equivalent to the SHO grade will continue to start in the first week of August. Doctors at the equivalent of SpR level will continue to have staggered start dates.

To ask the Secretary of State for Health pursuant to the answer of 14 May 2007, Official Report, column 582W, on the Medical Training Application Service (MTAS) website, whether her Department monitors the number of visitors to the MTAS website; and what other information about visits to the MTAS website her Department monitors. (140719)

[holding answer 6 June 2007]: The Department’s supplier monitors the number of visitors to the Medical Training Application Service website and page visits. The total average daily visits and peak daily visits are reported to the Department monthly. The most recent figures are for the month of April and are shown in the table.

April

Total number of visits to the website in period

245,314

Average number of visits per day within the period

8,177

Peak number of visits in one day within the period

22,423

Cumulative number of users registered

51,474