Why the UK's Medical Training Application Service failed

BMJ 2007; 334 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.39154.476956.BE (Published 15 March 2007) Cite this as: BMJ 2007;334:543
  1. Tony Delamothe, Deputy editor (tdelamothe@bmj.com)
  1. BMJ, London WC1H 9JR

    No convincing validation of the new process was provided

    Stung by near universal condemnation of its new process for short listing junior doctors for specialty training posts,1 the UK government acted. On Tuesday 6 March it announced a review and by Friday 9 March it had accepted the review's first round of recommendations.

    These recommendations were that the first round of interviews should continue as planned, but with a “strengthened” interview process. Applicants not short listed for interview can have their application form reviewed by a trained adviser, which might result in the offer of a first round interview. Applicants could now include CVs and portfolios to support their application.

    The review also promised major changes to the second round, including changes to the application form and the scoring system. The revised approach will be fully tested and agreed with stakeholders before it is introduced.2 The review expects to make its final report by the end of the month.

    While the response has been commendably fast, it begs the question as to why if the flaws in the new proposals were so easily spotted—and rectified—they weren't noticed earlier. All parties to the hastily convened review—the government, the royal …

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