First doctors graduate from Peninsula Medical School
first doctors to graduate from the Peninsula Medical School
have done so at a ceremony at the University of Exeter on
Friday 13th July. Peninsula Medical School graduations will
alternate between the University of Exeter and the University
of Plymouth, with Plymouth hosting the 2008 graduation ceremony.
The first cohort of medical students began their studies
in 2002 and have followed and helped to refine a new curriculum
that embraces groundbreaking approaches to the teaching of
medicine. After five years of study and practical experience
in real clinical situations throughout the Westcountry, 88
new doctors graduated on Friday, 67 of whom will stay in the
Westcountry to practise at the region's five main hospitals.
Seven have passed with distinction.
In all, five will practise at the North Devon NHS Hospital
Trust, 19 at Plymouth NHS Hospitals Trust, 20 at the Royal
Cornwall NHS Hospitals Trust, 18 at the Royal Devon &
Exeter NHS Hospital Trust, and five at South Devon NHS Hospitals
Trust. The remainder have chosen to practise at other hospitals
around the UK.
Initial recruitment to Foundation Year 1, the first year
after graduation, has been successful for the Peninsula Medical
School's first doctors, with 94.5 per cent of them obtaining
the positions for which they had applied.
Undergraduate retention has also been successful, with the
Peninsula Medical School experiencing a drop out rate of 4.5
per cent compared with the national average of 12 per cent.
In addition to the Peninsula Medical School graduates, who
received a Bachelor of Medicine Bachelor of Surgery, the Peninsula
Postgraduate Health Institute awarded 26 accolades. The Peninsula
Medical School also conferred an honorary graduateship to
Professor Dame Carol Black, Chairman of the Academy of Medical
Royal Colleges and Past President of the Royal College of
Interest in the Peninsula Medical School has grown year on
year, and currently 11 applicants chase each new undergraduate
place. In January 2006 the School was competitively awarded
an extra 33 undergraduate places to meet the demands of the
health service, bringing the cohort size to 214 students.
As well as training and nurturing the doctors of tomorrow,
the Peninsula Medical School also contributes to national
and international medical research at the highest levels.
Its research is recognised in areas such as diabetes, cancer,
heart disease, lung disease, chronic fatigue syndrome/ME,
MS, complementary therapies, genetics, vascular cell biology,
childhood obesity and endocrinology.
Its diabetes research team won international acclaim this
year when they contributed to the work that identified the
so-called FTO 'fat gene'.
Professor Sir John Tooke, Dean of the Peninsula Medical School,
commented: "My congratulations go to our first cohort
of graduating doctors. Their commitment to the course they
have completed and to medicine has been exemplary, and we
look forward to tracing their future careers with great interest."
Sir John continued: "My thanks go to all our partners,
local politicians and the people of the West Country who helped
the Peninsula Medical School become a reality, and who have
supported us thus far in our development. Particular thanks
go to our partners at the University of Exeter, the University
of Plymouth and the NHS who have shared with us the vision
which has created the fine medical school we know today."
The Peninsula Medical School is a joint entity of the Universities
of Exeter and Plymouth with support from the NHS in the Westcountry.
The Objective One Programme for Cornwall and the
Isles of Scilly has invested in the Combined Universities
in Cornwall (CUC) project, both Phase 1 and Phase 2, through
the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and the European
Social Fund (ESF).
William 'Billy' Headdon, 23, came to the Peninsula
Medical School straight from Truro College. Billy is one of
the School's seven graduates to pass with distinction,
and he will be returning to Truro to work in paediatrics at
the Royal Cornwall Hospital Trust, Treliske, Truro. He said:
"I have enjoyed the steadily increasing workload over
the past five years, and I have especially enjoyed the fifth
year when we have been involved with clinical teams in local
hospitals. I am really pleased to be working in Truro."
Feisa Radford, 37, did a foundation course at the University
of Plymouth before beginning her studies at the Peninsula
Medical School. Before that she was a physiotherapy assistant
at North Devon District Hospital. Feisa said: "The Peninsula
Medical School has really prepared us well for our first placements
in hospitals. The five years have gone in a flash, and they
have enabled me to realise a dream I have had for years."
Feisa will join North Devon District Hospital where she will
work in general surgery and colorectal. She added: "I
am delighted to be working in North Devon, an area I love.
The hospital will give me a plethora of experience working
with the local community and visitors during the tourist season."
Sabeel, aged 39 and originally from Malaysia, has made Plymouth
his home. He and his wife moved to Plymouth from Croydon so
he could study at the Peninsula Medical School – his
wife is a medical secretary at Derriford Hospital. Said Sabeel:
"The last five years have been amazing and a rollercoaster
ride. In years one and two I worked a 20-hour a week part-time
job on top of my studies, in the third year I commuted to
Exeter everyday, in year four I did my elective in Canada
and Barbados, and in year five I enjoyed placements in the
South West – and every single part of the experience
was worth it." He added: "I love Plymouth and
I am looking forward to working at Derriford Hospital. I am
starting out in general transplant surgery, then moving on
to paediatrics and then care of the elderly."
Alan, 37, joined the Peninsula Medical School as a qualified
mechanical engineer and from a position where he was project
manager on international projects for a large advertising
company. Alan, who is from Plymouth and is married with a
six-year-old daughter, will be joining Derriford Hospital
where he will be working in general transplant surgery. He
said: "I am delighted to be working at Derriford. It
will be a challenge and a good place to cut my teeth."
Lorraine Hutchinson-Gale, 42, started her course as a trained
nurse with a science degree. Lorraine is married to a doctor
and has four children, James, 19, Lucy, 16, Emily, 12, and
Oliver 10. Lucy is keen to follow in her parents' footsteps
by training to be a doctor.
Said Lorraine: "The course has been full of challenges.
We were exposed to the clinical area at an early stage in
our studies, and this combined with the way in which we have
been taught and the emphasis that has been placed on developing
communication skills, means that we are all feeling confident
and competent about our first jobs in medicine. I have discussed
this many times with my husband, who has on more than one
occasion said that he wished he had been taught medicine as
I have been."
Lorraine will practise at Torbay Hospital in the gastric
surgery department. She said: "I am really looking forward
to being a part of the hospital and to putting my training
to good use to the benefit of patients and my colleagues."
David McGregor, 40, will start his career as a doctor at the
Royal Devon & Exeter Hospital in upper gastrointestinal
surgery. He will be working in A&E over the Christmas
period in acute liaison psychiatry and general medicine. Before
his studies David was the principle orthotist at the Exeter
Mobility Centre, where he continued to work part time throughout
his studies. Said David: "I have found the course very
enjoyable, and it is very flexible for mature students like
QUOTES AND TESTIMONIALS OF SUPPORT
Department of Health
"When the Peninsula Medical School was established it
was one of a number
of schools to bring in new ideas and innovations to the education
training of our young doctors. It has been a remarkable success
and it is
welcome news that so many of the new doctors will be serving
in the West
Country which will benefit greatly from their skills."
Sir Liam Donaldson, Chief Medical Officer
"Congratulations to everyone concerned with the Peninsula
Medical School including not just the first crop of students
but also the academics, clinical and other staff who made
it possible. I am very pleased to have been instrumental in
setting up the Medical School and my confidence that it would
be a success has been amply justified. To establish such a
complex institution as a new medical school is a remarkable
achievement by all concerned.
The R. Hon. Frank Dobson MP, then Secretary of State when
the Peninsula Medical School was set up
Local Hospital Trusts
"We are delighted as a hospital trust to be welcoming
our own 'home grown' doctors who are familiar
with our organisation and what we are trying to achieve. We
have been anticipating the arrival of doctors trained at the
Peninsula Medical School for some time, and we are very pleased
that they are here now."
Mr Terence Lewis, Medical Director, Plymouth NHS Hospitals
"We are delighted that our on going partnership with
the Peninsula Medical School is reaping benefits for local
people. It is particularly encouraging that so many of the
doctors want to continue their careers serving patients in
the South West. This speaks volumes for the quality of education
and their learning experience in local hospitals."
Angela Pedder, Chief Executive, Royal Devon & Exeter
NHS Foundation Trust
"The South Devon Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust is
delighted to be employing some of the first graduates of the
Peninsula Medical School here at Torbay Hospital. This is
an exciting landmark both regionally and nationally and the
fruit of many years of hard work and innovation. South Devon
Healthcare has been actively involved in the development and
delivery of the course and believes that these pioneers will
be the first of many to join our workforce in the future."
Dr John Lowes, Director of Education and Consultant Gastroenterologist,
"My colleagues and I at the North Devon NHS Hospital
Trust are delighted to be welcoming our first home grown doctors
from the first graduating cohort at the Peninsula Medical
School. They would have already spent some time with us as
part of their studies so we are confident that they will understand
our commitment to the highest levels of care – which
is good news for their new colleagues already at the hospital
and for our patients. My personal congratulations go to the
88 graduates and to the people who have worked so hard to
get them where they are today."
Jac Kelly, Chief Executive, North Devon NHS Hospital Trust
Local Members of Parliament
"I congratulate everyone - especially the first new graduates
- on reaching this important milestone in the life of the
Peninsula Medical School which already has a deservedly high
reputation. It is good also to know that almost all of the
new graduates have secured the jobs they applied for - and
that three quarters of them will be working in hospitals in
Devon and Cornwall. I wish them well in their future careers
and look forward to joining them at their graduation ceremony."
Linda Gilroy MP, Plymouth Sutton
"The Peninsula Medical School is rapidly becoming a
centre of excellence of which we can all be proud. Well done
to all those involved."
Gary Streeter MP, South West Devon
"The Peninsula Medical School is doing an outstanding
job in providing the South West with much needed doctors.
What is especially pleasing is the fact that such a high percentage
of the graduates have found placements with hospitals in Devon
and Cornwall. I think the school and its students should be
rightly proud of the contribution they are making to the medical
needs of the region. The achievements of this first round
of graduating doctors are highly encouraging for the future."
Nick Harvey MP, North Devon
"I am delighted to hear of the success of the students,
it stands as a testament to the quality of the education that
has been provided at the Peninsula Medical School. The number
graduates obtaining positions, and the retention of the majority
in Devon and Cornwall, further underlines the success of the
school. I would like to offer my congratulations to all the
staff and the new graduates." Colin Breed MP, South
"Congratulations to everyone graduating from Peninsula
Medical School. I send my very best wishes for your future
Angela Browning MP, Tiverton and Honiton
"I am delighted that Torbay Hospital has been given
the opportunity to play a small role in the success of the
Peninsula Medical School and pleased that Torbay will benefit
form the School's high standards."
Adrian Sanders MP, Torbay
"I am delighted that over two thirds of the Peninsula
Medical School graduates have obtained placements at hospitals
in Devon and Cornwall. It is marvellous we will have our own
doctors trained in Devon and now working in Devon."
Anthony Steen MP, Totnes
"Having been closely involved in setting up medical
training in Truro it's great to see it being such a
success for Cornwall. It is absolutely wonderful that we now
have the facilities to train these – clearly highly
sought after – doctors, and it is also fantastic that
many of them will be starting their careers right here at
home. I know that there have been some major national problems
for newly qualified doctors trying to secure work, and that's
why the news that the majority of these graduates have been
successful is very encouraging. They will be a great asset
to Treliske, and, indeed across the county."
Matthew Taylor MP, Truro and St Austell
"The results have been fantastic, enhancing the Medical
School's already excellent reputation. More importantly there
is clear evidence that the graduates are staying in the South
West. Keeping this pool of skilled people in the South West
is vitally important if we are to meet the growing health
needs of our region as well as further develop our medical
and health science sector."
Alison Seabeck MP, Plymouth Devonport
Statement from Professor Dame Carol Black
Professor Dame Carol Black, Chairman of the Academy of Medical
Royal Colleges and Past President of the Royal College of
Physicians, will be honoured at the first graduation ceremony
for Peninsula Medical School students.
Dame Carol expressed her delight and pride in coming to receive
the Honorary Doctorate in Science at this, the first graduation
ceremony for Peninsula Medical School students.
She recalled "that the Medical School was designed
round the three pillars that give the National Health Service
a unique quality and strength: the medical science, education
and training, and clinical service. The foundations of clinical
practice and service, innovation and improvement, are built
up from clinical and basic sciences, behavioural and social
sciences, and the research that underpins them." And,
she reminded us, "they are enriched by the humanities."
"Doctors must have the knowledge and understanding
to bring this science and art to the care of patients. Patients
are best served by doctors whose minds are well prepared –
prepared for sound clinical reasoning within humane encounters."
Dame Carol observed too that "the experience of education
– of learning – in this School is generating a
research base. And research must inform the shaping and reshaping,
and delivery of services."
"From its foundation seven years ago, the Peninsula
Medical School has shared these aims in its partnership with
the Universities of Exeter and Plymouth and the NHS in Devon
and Cornwall. They are an example to all of us and together
they signal the promise of ever improving health and social
care in the Peninsula."
WHAT YOU NEED TO TRAIN A DOCTOR
Over the past five years the first doctors to graduate from
the Peninsula Medical School have used the following items
in their training:
||3,380 pairs of examination gloves
||1,170 pairs of sterile surgeon's gloves
||650 sterile surgical gowns
||4,485 hypodermic needles
||2,600 sutures inserted into 650 lacerations
||64 litres of simulated blood (the equivalent of 11.5
||82 simulated arms containing 143 metres of arteries
||403 DVD-Rs used to record 75,400 minutes (or 1,256 hours)
of interviews and feedback
||130 condoms used in sexual lifestyle advice training
||42.9 litres of alcohol hand rub, used to wash hands
||1,040 cardiac arrests, involving 56,500 chest compressions
and 7,533 artificial ventilations
||3,770 simulated patient interviews, consisting of 37,700
minutes (or 628 hours) of listening
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