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Bradford University: Medical School

Volume 672: debated on Monday 2 March 2020

5. What discussions he has had with the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care on the potential merits of Bradford University establishing a medical school. (901010)

The Secretary of State for Education, who is in fact an esteemed alumnus of Bradford University, has not discussed the potential merits of the university establishing a medical school with the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care. The Government provide grant funding for eligible higher education providers to contribute towards the cost of delivering medical degrees.

The truth is that the last Conservative Government did not engage with any university in the whole of Yorkshire when they were planning their medical schools. Perhaps now, given that the Tory buzzword is “levelling up”, the Minister might level up Bradford University and Yorkshire, and work with and agree to meet the university, which is very ready to train up medics, given that post-Brexit Britain will have a skills shortage.

The University of Bradford did contribute a bid in 2017. That process subsequently produced five brand new medical schools, which have increased our capacity by 1,500 medical places. Unfortunately, the University of Bradford’s application was unsuccessful, but it is not true to say that the Department did not engage with the university, and I am more than happy to visit it.

It is wonderful to hear about the plans at the University of Bradford. In addition, the University of Worcester is developing plans for a three counties medical school, which would cover Worcestershire, Gloucestershire and Herefordshire. May I urge my hon. Friend also to look into working with the Department of Health and Social Care to support that bid?

Thank you, Mr Speaker. We are excited about all the opportunities that are developing around the country. The NHS people plan, which has considered options for growing the medical workforce, will be published later this year.