Introduction to Welcomed and valued

This advisory guidance has been created to help organisations consider how best to support medical students and doctors in training.

It replaces Gateways to the professions. It reaffirms the principles from Gateways to the professions and aims to give more practical advice for the day-to-day aspects of medical education and training.

It does not lay down new requirements, quality assurance standards or policies from the GMC or any of the other organisations involved. The guidance refers to statutory requirements for medical schools and organisations involved in postgraduate training, and provides practical suggestions for organisations to consider.

This guidance is also underpinned in our standards for doctors, medical students, and medical education and training. This means that patient safety is the first priority. Patient safety is inseparable from a good learning environment and culture that values and supports learners and educators.

Definitions used in this guidance

Throughout this document, when we refer to:

  • Disabled learners or disabled doctors – we mean medical students and doctors in training with disabilities, including long-term health conditions.
  • Doctors in training – Doctors in training are those who:
    • are in foundation year two
    • are in a GMC approved training programme
    • have a fixed term specialty training appointment (FTSTA), or
    • have a locum appointment for training (LAT).
  • Support – we mean a range of support measures including reasonable adjustments.
  • Organisations – we mean organisations responsible for educating and training medical students and doctors in training in the UK.
  • Employers – we mean organisations employing doctors in training.

Who is this guidance for?

This guidance may be useful for:

  • medical education providers and organisers
  • medical school staff
  • deaneries and Health Education England (HEE) local teams, referred to as postgraduate training organisations
  • local education providers
  • employers
  • royal colleges and faculties.

Local education providers should read this guidance to understand their role in supporting medical schools and postgraduate training organisations to meet their obligations to students and doctors in training while in the work environment. They should also be aware of the options available for supporting students and doctors in training. Employers should always keep in mind the provisions and potential sanctions covered under the Equality Act 2010 and, in Northern Ireland, the Disability Discrimination Act 1995, and Special Educational Needs and Disability (Northern Ireland) Order 2005.

It will also be useful for individuals, including medical students (both prospective and current) and doctors with long-term health conditions and disabilities.

We hope people who are thinking of applying to medical school, medical students and doctors will use this guidance to understand the support they can expect to receive while going through their undergraduate and postgraduate training.

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