St Andrews and Dundee medical schools to deliver programme.
Health Secretary Shona Robison will reinforce the Scottish Government's commitment to attracting and retaining the best talent into Scotland's healthcare profession during a speech to NHS employees.
Speaking at the NHS Event in Glasgow later today, the Health Secretary will announce that Scotland's first graduate entry programme for medicine will be delivered by the medical schools in St Andrews and Dundee in collaboration with the University of the Highlands and Islands.
A programme will developed over the next year with staff appointments commencing in 2017. Applications will open to students in spring 2018 with courses beginning in the autumn of that year.
Ms Robison said:
"I am delighted to announce that the medical schools in St Andrews and Dundee will deliver Scotland's first graduate entry programme for medicine, in collaboration with the University of the Highlands and Islands and partner health boards. .
"This innovative new programme will give students the chance to experience how rewarding, challenging and diverse careers in primary care and remote and rural medicine can be.
"Scotland's first graduate entry programme in medicine was one of a number of initiatives announced by the First Minister earlier this year and it forms part of our commitment to create a more sustainable medical workforce and encourage more people into a career in healthcare, whatever their background.
"This course will enhance the range of medical education already available in Scotland through our five world-leading medical schools. It will extend medical placements from the NHS into independent and third sector settings, making community experience a central feature of the course. This will help to equip the graduates with the ability to work across health and social care boundaries."
This announcement follows on from the First Minister's £27 million commitment earlier this year to enhance the NHS workforce of the future. This included £23 million to increase the number of medical school places and widen access to medical schools with a new entry level programme for those from deprived backgrounds, as well as create Scotland's first graduate entry programme for medicine.
Funding is also going to train an additional 500 advanced nurse practitioners and provide a discretionary fund for nursing and midwifery students, as well as retain the nursing and midwifery student bursary.
The graduate entry medical programme requires approval by the GMC as the regulator of Medical Education curricula. The Scottish Government will work closely with the medical schools and the GMC to gain the necessary approvals as soon as possible.
Existing medical undergraduate degrees take five or six years. This new programme is a bespoke four year medical degree, designed for students who are already graduates and wish to train as doctors.