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Medical Education


Scottish Graduate Entry Medicine (ScotGEM)

Scottish Graduate Entry Medicine (ScotGEM) recruited the first cohort of 55 students to start in 2018 with students being dispersed across partner health boards (Dumfries and Galloway, Fife and Highland) from August 2019.

ScotGEM is designed to develop doctors interested in a career as a generalist practitioner within NHS Scotland, with a focus on rural medicine and healthcare improvement. It offers a unique and innovative 4-year graduate entry medical programme tailored to meet the contemporary and future needs of the NHS in Scotland.

The course capitalises on the existing strengths of medical teaching in the Universities of Dundee and St Andrews and the local health boards in Fife and Tayside. Collaboration with NHS Dumfries and Galloway, NHS Highland, and the University of Highlands and Islands will enable the development of a truly distinctive programme offering training that is ideal for those interested in a career as a generalist practitioner. This includes offering extended opportunities to train in rural areas. The ScotGEM programme is tailored to the specific needs of graduates, taking account of the experience acquired during their initial degree.

A first degree at 2:1 or above is needed to apply along with a Higher/A level Chemistry at grade A/B
The first year of training takes place in St Andrew’s with the opportunity for around 12-15 students to spend some/all of the second and third years in Dumfries and Galloway. The final year is in Dundee. Scottish domiciled students have their fees paid by the Scottish Government and a bursary of £4000 per annum is available.

ScotGEM is an exciting development for NHS Dumfries and Galloway that will enable us to be increasingly involved in the training of a new generation of doctors some of whom, we hope, will join us in the future.

Further information is available on St Andrew’s University ScotGEM MBChB Information and University of Dundee ScotGEM Information.
For admissions enquires please contact [email protected]

All applicants need to apply for the GAMSAT test: Graduate Medical School Admissions Test (GAMSAT).

For more information, please contact Dr. Sara Proudfoot, Associate DME (ScotGEM) NHS Dumfries and Galloway by email to [email protected]

Foundation Training Programme

We pride ourselves on providing a supportive, enjoyable, and stimulating experience for young doctors. We are a rural area and thus offer a different experience from city hospitals. The scheme is particularly suitable for doctors wishing to gain a lot of practical experience. Those interested in rural practice will gain valuable insight into rural medicine, and those interested in academic spheres will have plenty of opportunity to develop skills in presentation and publication. Many of our previous juniors have published in academic journals while with us and have developed projects with the support of our Research and Development Department.

In addition to standard foundation training, ALERT & ILS courses are provided for our FY1 trainees with ALS courses provided for all FY2 trainees. Additional Scottish Neonatal Resuscitation Courses for Paediatric and Obstetric trainees, Emergency Radiology courses for Accident & Emergency trainees are also available.

Participants in our scheme are currently entitled to FREE single accommodation, and removal expenses of up to £1,000 if appointed for 12 months.

Shadowing Programme

Trainees commencing work in FY1 posts at the start of August each year attend a Shadowing week prior to starting their post. During the week trainees get to know one another, are introduced to hospital staff with whom they will work, learn about all the important aspects of working in Dumfries, and have the opportunity to join current FY1 doctors in their work. We aim to give a thorough grounding in the life of an FY1 doctor so that trainees not only feel confident to start their new roles as doctors the following week, but also develop an FY1 team which will be mutually supportive throughout the coming year.


Doctors will spend 4 months in each of three blocks - medicine, surgery and acute care.


Doctors will gain experience in at least two different medical speciality wards and medical receiving, taking an active role in patient care. Rotas will cover day, evening and weekend work as well as weekend nights. The Department of Medicine runs an extensive teaching programme, in which all trainees are encouraged to actively contribute.


Doctors will gain experience in a general surgical ward, an orthopaedic ward and surgical receiving, taking an active role in patient care. Rotas will cover day, evening/weekend work and night shifts. Formal and informal teaching, led by consultants, specialty doctors and higher trainees takes place throughout your placement.

Acute Care

There is an opportunity for trainees to gain experience in caring for acutely ill patients during FY1. Doctors will be involved in medical and surgical admissions, ITU and anaesthetics, and work with the hospital-at-night team. This proves particularly popular with trainees, providing many valuable experiences in a well supported environment.


Doctors who have completed their FY1 year will spend 4 months in each of three blocks from general medicine, emergency medicine, paediatrics, obstetrics and gynaecology, psychiatry and general practice.

General Medicine

Trainees will gain excellent experience in general medicine with rotations in general and specialist wards, the Acute Medical Unit (AMU) and medical HDU. You will spend time on-call for unselected medical admissions, in-patient referrals and ward cover. We are a busy District General Hospital and there will be plenty of opportunity to perform practical procedures under the guidance of supportive senior staff. You will be supervised by enthusiastic and experienced seniors who will allow you to develop your skills and assume responsibility appropriate to your grade. Within some specialties there will be opportunities to attend clinics. There are weekly Grand Round and Journal Club meetings as well as regular M&M and patient safety meetings and clinical skills teaching.

Emergency Medicine

The Emergency Department covers a large geographical area, and offers junior doctors excellent training opportunities, providing experience in the management of a wide range of undifferentiated clinical conditions from minor illness to life threatening injury. Trainees are supervised 24 hours per day by a combination of Consultant and middle grade staff, with feedback from previous trainees highlighting the quality of supervision as well as recognising the department as a quality learning environment. Trainees receive a comprehensive induction programme along with weekly departmental teaching including clinical and x-ray tutorials, clinical simulation and bi-monthly Morbidity & Mortality meetings. The department Consultants are actively involved in departmental education, and ample opportunities exist for teaching and audit.


Trainees will initially work in a general paediatric ward where they will learn to deal with all types of acute paediatric referrals, gain experience of the common conditions of childhood and how to handle children and their parents. Acute resuscitation training in paediatrics and neonates is provided, including the certificated Neonatal Life Support course. There is bleep free education on a weekly basis including half day grand rounds and CPD sessions and tutorial sessions presented by FY2 and GPST2 trainees. Trainees will experience some working at night, with good registrar support, in a joint scheme with Obstetrics.

Obstetrics and Gynaecology

Obstetrics and Gynaecology services are based in the modern Cresswell Maternity Unit attached to the main Infirmary. Along with the challenge of providing care to patients across a large geographical area, trainees will experience a wide range of clinical activity during their time with the department. Gynaecology outpatient services include Hysteroscopy, Colposcopy and clinics for Gynaecological Oncology, Vulval Disease, Urogynaecology, HRT and Fertility. Obstetrics services include pre-natal diagnosis with ultrasound and amniocentesis and specialist clinics for women who have drug or alcohol addiction and for those with diabetes. The department is involved in the provision of Scottish Core Obstetric Teaching and Training in Emergencies (SCOTTIE) courses twice a year and there are weekly educational meetings with topics which vary from audit projects to the presentation of interesting or unusual cases.


Psychiatric services are based in Midpark Hospital in Dumfries, with Community Mental Health Teams (CMHT) working throughout the region. Mental health services are provided on an in-patient and out-patient basis by CMHT. Services include old age, general adult, rehabilitation, child and adolescent, addiction, forensic, learning disability, eating disorders and ECT. Trainees will be part of a team looking after in-patients as well as experiencing community psychiatry. The department has an internal training programme with a full induction and weekly teaching sessions.

General Practice

Trainees undertaking the general practice block will be encouraged to take a full part in the practice team. They will develop relationships with their own clientele of patients and undertake consultations in the surgeries and at times in patient’s homes. Relationships between team members – doctors, practice nurses, district nurses, health visitor, receptionists and managers will be explored. Practices involved are widespread across the region and therefore provide a variety of experience.

Foundation Education Programme

The Education Centre organise a mandatory lunchtime teaching programme for all FY1 & FY2 doctors. These protected time sessions cover all aspects of the Foundation Curricula.

Educational and Clinical Supervision and Assessment

Each FY doctor will be allocated an Educational Supervisor. This person may follow them through the entire year, or for operational reasons sometimes the Educational Supervisor may change. The role of the supervisor is to help trainees to identify educational needs, and work out how to use the opportunities available to meet them. At some times the Educational Supervisor may be employed in a different department to the trainee - in this case the trainee is also allocated a clinical supervisor, responsible for supervising the trainee within that department.
Trainees must complete an ePortfolio throughout their time with us. It is crucial that this is kept up to date in order for doctors to complete the year successfully.


FY1 doctors are allocated 3 weeks holiday in each 6 month block. FY2 doctors are allocated approximately 2 weeks holiday in each 4 month block. These holiday blocks are a combination of annual leave and public holiday entitlement. Holidays need to be determined by the rota, however every effort will be made to accommodate any requests.


Single accommodation is free for FY trainees. Shared self contained flats comprise bedrooms, a kitchen, a bathroom and a sitting room. Cleaning and bed linen is provided. Free parking is an additional benefit, as is the provision of free wireless internet access.


Full details of the curriculum and eportfolio are available from the sites below.

NHS Education for Scotland
NHS Foundation Programme
Scottish Medical Training
NHS ePortfolios

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