Consultant Survey gives overwhelming endorsement to North Wales Clinical School

New survey results have shown that the North Wales Clinical School is helping to attract doctors to work in North Wales.

Of those who were aware of the Clinical School when applying for their role, up to 85% said its existence and reputation had a positive influence on their decision to apply for a job in North Wales.

The Clinical School was set up in 2004 as a joint venture between the NHS in North Wales and Cardiff, Bangor and Wrexham’s Glyndŵr Universities.  It originally provided support and facilities for 50 students who were doing their medical training at the region’s hospitals; it now has 150 students at any one time.

These links to the Universities have also allowed the Clinical School to develop a reputation for excellence in healthcare research, bringing together researchers from across North Wales to carry out internationally renowned projects, many involving local communities.  One example is the CHARISMA trial. This demonstrated the benefits of installing ventilation into the homes of children with asthma in Wrexham - it is due to be published in a leading medical journal later this year.

The survey involved nearly 200 medical consultants who work for the Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board and who had been appointed since the Clinical School was set up.  Around two thirds of these responded, an exceptionally good response rate for this type of survey.

Their replies gave a very strong endorsement to the work and teaching of the North Wales Clinical School; typical comments included:

  • ‘It is an excellent place for teaching and learning’
  • ‘The Clinical School is a fantastic resource’
  • ‘It’s exciting and good to have a Clinical School in North Wales; I hope this will help us in generating our own workforce’

Commenting on the survey Prof. Clare Wilkinson, Director of Research NWCS, said “This is a striking endorsement of the partnership between the NHS and University sector in North Wales.  A strong research and teaching culture in the NHS leads to high quality clinical care, and improves our economy.”

Dr. Paul Birch, Assistant Medical Director for BCUHB also said: “The NWCS has played a major role in improving the recruitment of junior doctors to BCHUB and is a significant incentive in our drive to attract high quality consultants to North Wales.”

Similar comments were made by Prof. Michael Rees, Head of Cardiovascular Studies at Bangor University: “This survey demonstrates the essential role that the NWCS plays in the recruitment of doctors in North Wales and argues for continuing the Clinical School as a driver for excellence for patient benefit.”

Dr. Lynne Kennedy, Academic Lead for Health and Medical Sciences at Glyndŵr University said: “Glyndwr University very much welcomes this survey which highlights the NWCS' excellent reputation and its positive influence on attracting quality medical staff to the region.”

Publication date: 8 July 2011