Saturday, 27 December 2014

Part Time GP/ Part Time Athlete

James Tullie is a GPST3 on the Caledonian Program.  He kindly wrote an article on his aspiration to compete for Britain in the World Orienteering Championships taking place around Inverness in August 2015.   Here is an update on his life as a part time GPST / part time athlete.

"I started ST3 in August 2014 in Grantown-on-Spey, towards the north end of the Spey valley. That's when I started working part time at 50% in a bid to achieve my ambitions in sport at the same time. I am trying to make the British team for the World Orienteering Championships in August 2015 which is based in Inverness. A once in a lifetime chance and too good to pass up. Many of the top athletes work part time or are even full time athletes and while working full time in medicine, it's difficult to compete. I am grateful for the big (friendly!) bosses in the North of Scotland Deanary for giving me this opportunity!

Wednesday, 17 December 2014

The Shetland "Hub and Spoke Model" - the Best of Both Worlds

Thanks to Dylan Murphy, a GP Educational Supervisor on Shetland, for this article on GP Training in Shetland, part of our Rural Track programme.

"Shetland has a thriving GP training environment, enabling the GPST to learn the art of General Practice in a remote location without losing the essential ability to complete training capable of independent practice anywhere in the UK.

The Remote and Rural track offers two places a year to GPSTs in Shetland. This is a four year scheme.

Sunday, 14 December 2014

Oban Chocolate Factory!

Anyone who has worked in Oban at the Lorn and The Isles Hospital will know that one of the best places to spend some well earned time off is the Oban Chocolate Factory. Well it is now official! Travel website Goeuro has listed the top 10 chocolate shops in Europe on it's blog and there at the top of the list is the Oban Chocolate Factory!

Wednesday, 10 December 2014

The Attractions of General Practice on Skye, Hannah Macleod

I moved to the Isle of Skye in 2009 to start a one year NES Rural fellowship post, having just finished my GP ST3 year in Comrie, Perthshire. The attraction to Skye (apart from the obvious natural beauty) was that it offered the opportunity to work somewhere without a DGH just round the corner, where a GP would therefore have an extended role. It didn’t disappoint and more than five years later I’m still living and working here.

Friday, 28 November 2014

Twitter Hour, 6-7pm Tuesday 2nd December

Twitter hour:

If you are thinking about applying for GP training in Scotland (or even if you're not!), why not join us for our 'Twitter hour' to answer all the burning questions that you have. The period for 2015 GP training recruitment ‎applications close on Thurs 4th December so this is a great opportunity to see what lies ahead.

Wednesday, 26 November 2014


Congratulations to our ST2/3s!  Today we are celebrating an exceptional set of AKT results from our ST2/3s with a pass rate of 96% amongst the 25 who sat the exam and some really great marks amongst them.  So well done to all.

Invest Live Visit Aberdeen

Interested in joining us in the North of Scotland for your GP Specialty Training and want to know more about the area?  Aberdeen has a great website Invest Live Visit Aberdeen.  Go to the Live Aberdeen section for a wealth of information on relocating to Aberdeen, careers in Aberdeen, studying in Aberdeen and living in Aberdeen.

Aberdeen is a vibrant city with a great range of shopping, restaurants, bars and nightlife.  There is an array of cultural activities including music festivals, theatre and a myriad of other events.

As well as the great city life on offer in Aberdeen, there is within easy reach a spectacular coastline and countryside that gradually rises up to the Cairngorm mountains.  There are not many cities in the world where you can go surfing off the beach although we would accept that some of the others are a little warmer!  Having said that, being in the East of Scotland and in the rain shadow of the mountains the weather is the driest in Scotland and Aberdeen was recently named sunniest city in the UK!

So why not sit back and watch this short video from Invest Live Visit Aberdeen and get a feel for what is on offer up here on the Grampian Program.

Wednesday, 19 November 2014

The transition to ST3

David Lovell, a GPST3 in Portlethen has kindly penned this article on the transition from the hospital component on the program in ST2 back into the GP phase in ST3

“I passed my ARCP!”

“Me too!”

Wednesday, 12 November 2014

August 2015 Recruitment Is Now Open!

Recruitment for the August 2015 round has now opened.  You have till Thursday 04 December 2014 at 16:00 to make that life changing decision to apply for GP Specialty Training in the North of Scotland.

Not only do our programs receive the best feedback from our trainees in the GMC survey but Grampian and Highland consistently rank amongst the top regions in the UK in quality of life surveys.

Whether it is the vibrant social life of the cities of Aberdeen or Inverness or the fantastic outdoor opportunities that abound in the North of Scotland, we have something for everyone.

Wednesday, 5 November 2014

Celebrating GP Careers

Interested in a career in general practice?  The RCGP has produced this short video "Celebrating GP Careers".  So if you are still not sure, why not set aside 10 minutes and watch this video to get a feel of some of the really good reasons for considering a career in GP.

Wednesday, 29 October 2014

Life on The Caledonian Program. Natali Gunawardena

Natali Gunawardena was a GPST3 in Elgin and has just come to the end of her training.  Here are her thoughts on her experience of training in Elgin in the Caledonian program.

My experience of GP training which has involved 3 years based in Elgin has been overwhelmingly positive. I was fortunate to be placed in what I consider to be an exemplary training practice, with excellent support and opportunities to learn and develop throughout my training. Other trainees based in other practices throughout Elgin and the surrounding area report similar positive experiences. We are lucky enough to have a very enthusiastic set of trainers and a very good quality of teaching, though some of this has been via videolink from Inverness.

Some of the less central practices around Elgin e.g. Dufftown, allow the opportunity to experience more rural general practice, while my own practice is one of the largest in Scotland and is placed just across the road from a district general hospital.

I thoroughly enjoyed my 18 months at Dr Gray's Hospital, Elgin, and I believe that I gained more experience and useful training than I would have received in GP training posts in some larger hospitals. It is a small friendly hospital with good facilities considering its size, excellent staff, and the opportunity to work in a relatively senior role which is great experience.

I consider myself very privileged to live in such a beautiful part of the country which is particularly well suited for those interested in outdoor pursuits, as there are opportunities for activities such as mountain biking, skiing and kayaking to be explored in the nearby locality. I plan to continue working here after completion of my training, and at least at the current time employment opportunities in the area are good.

Wednesday, 8 October 2014

The Cuillin Ridge

We would recommend you don't try this one!! It does however highlight the fantastic mountain playground that is within reach when you are based in the North of Scotland.  One of our ex-trainees Finlay Wild currently holds the record for running the Cuillin ridge on Skye from end to end in the unbelievable time of under 3 hours!

So whilst most of us are not quite in the class of either Finlay or Danny Macaskill, we can still get out there and enjoy the fantastic mountain environment that abounds in the North of Scotland.  So if the mountains are your preferred playground, either for skiing, climbing or walking, the North of Scotland has cornered the market!

Finlay Wild on His Cuillin Ridge Record

Wednesday, 1 October 2014

Grand Tours of The Scottish Islands

If you are interested in our remote and rural track program then you might be interested in the current BBC series Grand Tours of The Scottish Islands.  The series, presented by Paul Merton, sets out to explore life on the Scottish Isles.

These very same islands have some of the most acute general practice recruitment problems.  Jura, featured in the next program, was without its own GP for almost 2 years, surviving with a succession of GP locums and cover from neighbouring Islay until Drs Martin and Abby Beastall took over the practice in February 2013.  All this despite the islanders running a very innovative Facebook and Internet campaign to recruit a new GP.  The nearby islands of Mull and Islay have also had their own recruitment difficulties.

It is to address some of these difficulties that NES has created the Remote and Rural Track program which provides a 4 year program tailored to developing the skills required for life as a GP in these more remote locations in Scotland.

The programs are on BBC iPlayer and are aired at 7.30pm Monday evenings on BBC1 Scotland.  For those in the rest of the UK, to see them on iPlayer you will need to change your location to Scotland

Interested in island practice?  Here are some interesting links:-

Wednesday, 24 September 2014

Scottish Careers Fair

It was great to meet up with so many of you at the Scottish Careers fair last Saturday. Thanks must go to our trainee ambassadors Anne Rennie and Ian Robinson from the Caledonian Programme, and Catherine Brown and Jacqueline Gray from the Rural Track Programme in Shetland who willingly gave up valuable weekend time to promote GP as a career.

Throughout the day our team enjoyed having the chance to speak to lots of you who are interested in a career in General Practice, with many of you also keen on exploring the option of rural training. Our trainees, along with our Director Dr Ronald MacVicar, ran a seminar entitled "So you want to be a GP?" which attracted a large audience and this was followed by Catherine Brown and our Rural Track Training Program Director, Dr Liz Barr, who also led a seminar on Rural GP training, again with significant interest.

It was great to see so many of you genuinely interested in a career in General Practice, we hope the opportunity to talk directly to some of our trainees was helpful and look forward to welcoming you to the North Region GP Training programs in the years to come.

In the meantime, why not keep in touch with us either by registering for email alerts to updates on this blog (top of the right hand column of the page) or by following our facebook page.

Wednesday, 10 September 2014

GMC Trainee Survey, A Good News Story!

Feedback is extremely important to us.  It is only by gathering feedback from our trainees that we have been able to improve the standards of our programs and your training experience.  For this reason the GMC trainee Survey is very valuable to us and its results have allowed us to improve a number of areas.

Here are some of the highlights from this years survey.  Results are out of the 20 UK Deaneries.
  •  North of Scotland GPSTs are the second most satisfied overall with the GP component of their training - pipped at the post by SW Peninsula
  •  North of Scotland GPSTs are the most satisfied overall with their educational supervision during the GP component of their training
  •  North of Scotland GPSTs are the most satisfied overall with the hospital component of their training
  •  North of Scotland GPSTs are the most satisfied overall with the clinical supervision during the hospital component of their training.

Wednesday, 3 September 2014

Recruitment Dates For August 2015 Announced

The recruitment dates for August 2015 round of GP Training have been announced on the GP NRO website and are copied below.  So why not make the best decision of your life and apply for GP Training in the North of Scotland!

Advert Appears  01 November 2014
Apply from 11 November 2014
Closing Date 04 December 2014
Invitations to Stage 2 Assessment Expected No later than 22 December 2014
Stage 2 Assessment (Computer Based Test) 03-10 January 2015
Invitations to Stage 3 (Interview) Expected No later than 21 January 2015
Stage 3 Selection Centre Window 2-13 february 2015
Offers from 23 February 2015
Hold Deadline 19 March 2015 (13.00 UK Time)
Upgrade Deadline 26 March 2015 (17.00 UK Time)
Hierarchy Deadline 31 March 2015 (17.00 UK Time)

Wednesday, 27 August 2014

Welcome Class of 2014! Grampian ST1 Induction.

Welcome to the Grampian ST1s of 2014!  Last week saw our first get together at the ST1 induction at Forestgrove house.  It was great to meet up with all bar one of our new intake (the one missing person did have a cast iron excuse that his wife was in labour at the time!).

Wednesday, 13 August 2014

Follow Us On Facebook!

Those of you who prefer to do so can now follow us on Facebook.  We now have a Facebook page and will be posting links for our blog onto it.  You can find  us at

Thursday, 7 August 2014

The Joy of Rural Practice

In a recent article in Pulse magazine Dr Naomi Reifenberg explains how the challenge of being a half-day’s travel from the nearest hospital is outweighed by the rewards of a varied workload.  Naomi is a single handed GP at Hillsgarth Surgery on Unst in Shetland.  She has a list size of 600 patients.

Wednesday, 6 August 2014

The Fittie Squares , Aberdeen

Whilst Salmond and Darling were enjoying a bit of debate about Scotland's future on STV, the BBC were showing a program on the Fittie Squares in Aberdeen.  It gave a great taste of the recent history of Aberdeen and how the oil industry moved in and took over from the traditional North Sea fishing industry.

Wednesday, 2 July 2014

Town Mouse / Country Mouse

I am Debbie Miller , a GP Educational Supervisor at Nairn.

Rachel Hopkins is an experienced GP who has her own practice in Central London. She wanted a change and agreed to come up to the Highlands for 4 months to be my locum, a sort of "Town Mouse ,Country Mouse" thing.....except the Country Mouse headed off to the sun in Saudi Arabia (that's another story!)
I thought that it would be interesting to get some feedback from Rachel so she kindly agreed to jot something down about her experience and she has given permission for it to be posted on this blog.

"The cows looked mournfully out of the byre at me as I picked my way across the muddy farmyard to the cottage for a home visit. It had been tricky finding the right farm with no sign of a name anywhere- fortunately I'd been able to pull in and ring the farmer for directions. The environment was totally different to my usual work as an inner city GP in London, but the experience of struggling to locate a visit and ringing for directions was very familiar. Not very used to isolated farms in London, but maze-like housing estates. Finding home visits was like most of my experience spending my sabbatical from London working as a locum in Nairn, Highlands, both strikingly different but at the same time very familiar.

Wednesday, 18 June 2014

Some More Feedback!

Sherif, one of our ST3s was kind enough to send us this feedback and has agreed to us sharing it with you all via our blog.

"Dear Anna,
I really cannot thank you enough for all your support and encouragement all the way through my training.  I mean that that in its own was a great help, having someone we feel is on our side offering help and support.

The mock CSA practice was also great and I think it would be of immense value to everyone in the future.  The actor coming in was also helpful, especially with the scenarios chosen but I feel the mock CSA was more focused and much more structured.  Combining both would be great but if I had to choose one or the other I would choose the latter.

My small group was just super, Jenny our facilitator was just so genuinely interested and she always had something planned whether it was CSA practice or general discussions or hot topics.  I owe her a lot and I think it makes a great difference to feel that as a tutor she genuinely cared about the group, it becomes a much more involving and rewarding experience so If you can somehow clone Jenny, that would  really help other trainees in the future.  :)

Finally I think it really comes down to the human factor, people providing the service rather than the service itself and I think everyone in our programme has been genuinely helpful and supportive and at no point did I  feel let down or given up on which is the essence  of any successful training programme.
Thank you again for everything.


Wednesday, 11 June 2014

Recruitment 2014

So that is recruitment completed for 2014.  Congratulations to everyone who successfully applied to the North of Scotland schemes.  You have just made a very good decision!!  We look forward to meeting you all at your induction sessions in August.

In the lead up to August we will be sending you log-ins for our online learning system called Moodle.  All the information for your GP training is housed on Moodle including the induction dates and programs along with full information on your educational programs.

See you in August.

Wednesday, 4 June 2014

Aberdeenshire From Mountain to Sea

Watch this video from Aberdeenshire Council.  It shows some great reasons for coming to live and work in Aberdeenshire.  So if you are thinking of entering GP specialty training next year, put the North of Scotland at the top of your list!

Sunday, 1 June 2014

"The Slump", By Ian Wilson GPST3

At this time of  year, as part of our ST3 educational program we lay on what we call the "Finishing School". This is for those of you who have successfully completed the exam components of the MRCGP, the aim being to equip you for the challenges you will face in your next 30 years of general practice.

Sessions are varied and topics include:-  Financial Planning, What To Look For In A Contract, CV Writing, Resilience, Appraisal, Interview Practice and so on.

Today's session was on "Medical Humanities, What's The Point?"  The workshop focussed on the human aspects of being a GP and the central importance of the patient's story. It included time for narrative writing, during which participants were invited to reflect on their experiences as GP trainees and to write something from the third person perspective. The narratives were shared in pairs followed by a whole group discussion on the impact of the experience. During the wider discussion Iain was asked to read his poem to the whole group and was then encouraged by his fellow trainees to share it more widely , using this blog. So here it is!

The Slump

There once was a doctor called Ian
He hailed from the University of Aberdeen
Hospital was good, but he didn't fancy ST,
So packed his bags and set for the land of GP

Now the past 12 months have certainly been hard
Long days with no play resulting in extra lard.
He realised he began to struggle with the daily grind,
And even after a holiday still felt he was losing his mind.

But now there is a baby on the way!
He realises that he needs a job with some pay!
After recovering from the famous registrar slump
He no longer comes to work with the hump.

Although the future is still not entirely clear,
In GP, he knows he's picked an awesome career.


Wednesday, 28 May 2014

Orkney Remote and Rural Fellowship

Once you have finished your GP Specialty Training in the North of Scotland there are a number of post CCT options open to you.  In Grampian we have the career start scheme which offers you the opportunity to spend part of your time in a GP practice and the other part of your time working in a hospital specialty to develop an area of special interest. 

NHS Education Scotland also funds a number of Fellowships including  Medical Education, Remote and Rural and Health Inequality Fellowships.  Dr Holly Tyson is currently a Remote and Rural Fellow based on Orkney.  In the video above she describes some of her experiences during her time on Orkney.

To give you an idea of numbers, the Grampian Career Start scheme normally has around 10 posts although this may vary depending on the number of those wanting less than full time working.  There are 8 standard Rural Fellowships and 4 Acute Care Rural Fellowships.  Of these 4 remain available; 3 standard - 2 in Orkney, one in Caithness and one acute in Stranraer. Closing date is 16th June. Contact for queries is Gill Clarke (

Friday, 23 May 2014

Inverness Is The Happiest Place In Scotland!

Another good reason to come to Inverness on the Caledonian program!  Inverness is the happiest place in Scotland and the second happiest in the UK, according to a survey published this week by a property website.

Read more in this article on the BBC website.

Inverness Is The Happiest Place in Scotland

Wednesday, 21 May 2014

Aberdeen University Medical School Ranked Fifth in UK

Aberdeen University Medical School has been ranked fifth in the UK in the latest Complete Universities Guide. This also ranks it as top medical school in Scotland.  The tables are based on, entry standards, student feedback, research assessment and graduate prospects.

Complete Universities Guide
Aberdeen University News

Monday, 19 May 2014

Changes At The Balfour Hospital, Orkney

Due to Orkney’s geography, General Practice has always been pretty self-sufficient; used to taking on extended roles within Primary Care, dealing with emergency presentations on the single-handed  outer isles and taking on a broad spectrum of roles within the Balfour Hospital.  We also have a strong tradition of GP training both within Primary Care and the hospital.

Saturday, 17 May 2014

Working on Orkney, Sharmina Begum

I am currently doing a GPST rotation at Balfour Hospital, Orkney. When I was first advised that my 2nd GPST rotation would be in Orkney, I was devastated. The main reason for this was that I had to leave my family in Aberdeen. I have two young children and it is difficult to move with whole family only for six months. I really considered leaving the GP training because I could not bear the thought of living apart from my family for six months. However, now I am in the 3rd month of my rotation and I am glad that I am here!!!

Wednesday, 14 May 2014

Life On The Caledonian Program. Marc Quinn

I'm from Northern Ireland and studied in Queen's Belfast as well as doing my FY1 and FY2 in Northern Ireland. Most Irish seem to stay at home, with a small group heading to Australia for some reason (apparently it's particularly good for A&E and anaesthetics). I know of a few colleagues who went to the "mainland" UK by choice for a bit of a change, but most who go (in my year at least) seemed to have no other option.

I got my second choice deanery for GP training, which I hadn't given much thought to when choosing, thinking Scotland sounded a bit better than England or Wales. I had no idea where "Caledonia" was when I was given my rotation.

After spending about 9 months in the North of Scotland I've come to love it, and I don't think I'll be heading back home long term. It's just like home except there is better night life, better transport links, more mountains, more beaches, more forests, more castles (like 100 times more), and not a single person here as asked me what religion I belong to, or used those really obvious probing questions to try to find out. It's so refreshing to have found such a nice part of the world where I can feel comfortable, and it's just a quick flight home if needs be.

And just to add, on average, about a dozen times a day I'm informed that the person I'm speaking to "just loves" my accent. That never happened at home...I'm staying here :)


Wednesday, 30 April 2014

Orkney Network of Care

So how do you provide a modern primary and secondary care service to a population of 20,000 when it is spread over 17 islands?  Here is the NHS Orkney solution!

Orkney is an archipelago composed of a large central island (the Orkney mainland) and approximately 70 surrounding smaller islands, 17 of which are inhabited. The total population of Orkney is around 20,000 of which 3,300 live on islands without land access to Kirkwall. The Balfour Hospital is situated in Kirkwall, which is the main centre of population. Providing efficient and effective medical services to these island communities is a challenge faced by NHS Orkney.

In 2010 NHS Orkney had the opportunity to re-design the way primary care services are provided to the outer isles. The Isles Network of Care is the result of this work and has been created to achieve the following criteria:

  • Be clinically safe with a strong clinical governance structure that avoids clinicians working in isolation.
  • Provide continuity of care to the individual island communities.
  • Be a model that can be recruited to and sustained.
  • Provide the communities with the opportunity for input into the way their services are delivered.
  • Provide efficient and effective use of clinical time.
  • Be affordable within the budget of Orkney Health and Care.
The network of care includes General Practitioners on the isles of Westray, Stronsay, Sanday Rousay and Hoy and Nurse Practitioners on Papay Westray, Eday, North Ronaldsay and Flotta.

Individual practitioners are appointed to island practices to be the principle providers of care to each community. When on leave they are backfilled by another practitioner, including Rural Fellows, employed by NHS Orkney. In order to provide continuity of care the aspiration is that the same individual will provide cover to the same island for most of the time.

Saturday, 26 April 2014

Posts Available In Round 2

We have now finalised the posts we will be offering in Round 2 of GP Recruitment 2014.  They are as follows:-

Full details can be found under the Rotations Section.  So why not come and join us in 2014 and enjoy the fantastic lifestyle and training opportunities on offer in the North of Scotland.  Want to know more about what it's like to train here?  Read some of the testmonials that our current trainees have written.

Good luck, we look forward to seeing you in August!

Friday, 25 April 2014

Life On The Caledonian Program. Jess Ledingham

Jess Ledingham is in the first year of the Caledonian program having first moved up to Elgin as an FY2.  Here is her take on her experiences in Elgin.

Tuesday, 15 April 2014

Life on Orkney

Many trainees are a little wary of the prospect of spending time in some of our Rural General Hospitals, this wariness is usually dispelled within days of starting the posts and the feedback we receive from our trainees is universally positive with many talking about outstanding clinical and social experiences.  Lisa Hayward was no exception, read about her account of working in Orkney.

Saturday, 12 April 2014

Outer Hebrides Voted in 50 Best Tours in The World

A guided holiday of Scottish islands has been listed among National Geographic's 50 Tours of a Lifetime.

Wilderness Walking: The Outer Hebrides and Skye is the only UK entry on National Geographic Traveler's suggested tours to take in 2014.

The six-day Scottish holiday starts in Inverness and takes in Harris, Skye and Scalpay.

But if you really want to get to know the outer isles of Scotland's West Coast, why not apply for our Rural Track program.  Amongst the four posts still available in Round 2 is one based in Stornaway.  To read more about what it is like go to Kate Dixon's blog.

Monday, 7 April 2014

Hippokrates Exchange Programme, Katy Moult ST3

Katy Moult , ST3 in Grampian has recently completed a Hippokrates exchange.  The Hippokrates Exchange Program promotes links between junior GPs (those within 5 years of completing training), and established GPs and trainers in different European countries.  Katy has kindly allowed us to share her report with you.

Thursday, 27 March 2014

Working on Orkney

We are currently in the process of finalising what rotations we will be offering in Round 2. One thing that is certain that we will be offering 4 rural track rotations, 1 in Shetland, 1 in the Western Isles and 2 in Orkney.

David Lovell is a trainee on the Grampian four year program. He spent 6 months on Orkney during the first year of his 4 year program. Here is his take on what it is like to be a part of the community on Orkney.

"Working as a GP trainee in Orkney was one of the most fun and interesting periods of my life. Some of my favourite experiences are from that time and I would recommend working there to anyone.

Wednesday, 19 March 2014

The Work / Life Balance!

In life it is so important to find that balance between one's professional life and life outside medicine, whatever that may include.   James Tullie is a trainee on our 4 year Caledonian rotation.  He is combining his GP training with trying to qualify for the 2015 World Orienteering Championships that are to take place in Moray and Highland  in August 2015.  Here is his take on training in the North of Scotland.

"If you are considering GP training and can look beyond inner city practice, then I would highly recommend the north of Scotland. The following spiel describes my experiences which may help sway you either way!

Monday, 17 March 2014

Round 2 GP Recruitment

Orkney Fishing Fleet

Round 2 of GP Recruitment is now open!  We are pleased to say we have had a successful first round of recruitment filling over 80% of our GP Training posts.  The good news however is that there are still some excellent opportunities for those wishing to train in the North of Scotland.

All our Grampian rotations have filled in Round 1 however we still have three Caledonian 3 year posts and four Caledonian 4 year posts available.  We also have four Rural Track rotatations available, one in the Western Isles, one in Shetland and two in Orkney.  

Because the Round 1 clearing process is still ongoing we are unable to give final details of the rotations on offer but we will publicise them here as soon as they are finalised which will hopefully be in the next couple of weeks. 

The timetable for round 2 is as below, so don't delay, applications open tomorrow Tuesday 18th March and are only open for just over two weeks till April 3rd.

Applications can be submitted from10.00am Tuesday 18th March 2014
Applications MUST be submitted by17:00 on Thursday 3rd April 2014.
No late applications will be accepted under any circumstances
Foundation Competence evidence submitted by17:00 on Thursday 3rd April 2014.
Evidence MUST be attached to the application form at the time of submission.
Stage 2 (Computer Based Test)Monday 28th and Tuesday 29th April 2014. Places can be booked, on invitation, from 7th April 2014 once application has been accepted by long-listing deanery. No overseas assessment centres will be available during Round 2.
Stage 3 (Selection Centre)Tuesday 13th and Wednesday 14th May 2014
Offers outAround 16th May 2014 - offers may be released early if the deaneries are able to do so.
Offers accepted byWithin 48 hours of offer. National Clearing - From 26th May 2014 or as soon after as possible

Sunday, 9 March 2014

Aberdeen City and Shire - Achieve

Considering Grampian for GP Training and have a partner outside medicine?  Aberdeen City and Aberdeenshire councils have created this video about some of the employment opportunities in Grampian.

Grampian has a thriving economy mainly based on the offshore oil industry but with many diverse opportunities outside oil and gas including education and farming.  It has the lowest unemployment rate in the country.

Friday, 28 February 2014

Northern Lights

Here's another good reason to head to the North of Scotland!  This was the sky in Aberdeenshire at 9pm yesterday evening, we were treated to the most spectacular display of Northern Lights that went on for over 2 hours! This photograph does not really do it justice.  If you think this looks good, it will have been a lot brighter up in Orkney and Shetland!

So why not head to the land of the Northern Lights for your GP Training.

For some slightly more professional photos, go to the BBC website

Wednesday, 26 February 2014

Moray Firth, One of The Worlds Most Beautiful Coastlines.

The spectacular coastline of the Moray Firth has been named in the top twelve of the world’s most beautiful and unspoiled coastlines.

The Moray coast, stretching from Inverness to Peterhead, has been rated at eleventh place by a panel of 340 experts in sustainable tourism and destination stewardship in the prestigious National Geographic Society’s Travel magazine, ahead of the Dalmatian coast, the shores of Bermuda and the Antarctic Peninsula.

Read more in "The Scotsman"

So if you want to work in one of the most beautiful coastal areas in the world, why not look at our Caledonia program with rotations in both Inverness and Elgin and GP practice attachments in a number of the Moray coastal practices such as Forres, Elgin, Lossiemouth and Buckie.

Saturday, 22 February 2014

Aberdeen, Top Place In Scotland To Live and Work

Aberdeen has been ranked the best city to live and work in Scotland – and second best in the UK – in the 2013 Good Growth for Cities index.

The report places Aberdeen second only to Reading and Bracknell, both in Berkshire, in the national index, with Edinburgh – the only other Scottish city to make the UK top ten – in third place.

Read more in this Article from The Scotsman

So if you are interested in coming to one of the UKs most competitive and buoyant cities why not take a look at out Grampian rotations.

Wednesday, 19 February 2014

Rural Track Program

Lewis and Harris has been named as the best island in Europe by the international travel site Tripadvisor.
It also beat rivals in Thailand, Chile and Madagascar to be included in the top five islands in the world.

Scotland featured several times on the list with Orkney and Isle of Mull also named in the European top 10.

Read more on the BBC Website:- Lewis and Harris named as Europe's top island by TripAdvisor

So why not consider our Rural Track Programs, we have rotations based both in Stornoway on Lewis and also in Kirkwall on Orkney.  To get a feel for what its like to be on our Rural Track program why not read Kate Dixon's blog, Kate is now in her second year on the Western Isles rotation.

Saturday, 15 February 2014

Every Cloud Has a Silver Lining!

Moray Put On Alert For GP Crisis

It is a good time to be training as a GP in the North of Scotland.  An article in one of our local newspapers this week has highlighted the shortage of GPs that is starting to occur in the North and how this is likely to increase in the coming years.

As well as an increasing number of partnership vacancies we also have a career start scheme that offers the opportunity to develop a special interest whilst also working in one of our local GP practices. This year we have 4 posts in Aberdeen City and 7 posts in Aberdeenshire, the posts being part funded by NHS Grampian and  the local GP practices.  These posts have an educational component are an excellent opportunity to find your feet in general practice.

So come to the North of Scotland, not just to train, but to stay for good!

Sunday, 2 February 2014

Good Luck!

Good luck to those of you attending the Stage 3 selection Centre in Edinburgh next week.  It's now time to note your preference of training program so remember, North of Scotland consistently ranks at the top end of the GMC trainee survey for satisfaction with the GP component of the training program.  Not only that but Grampian, The Highlands, Western Isles and Northern  Isles all rank right at the top of quality of life surveys, Grampian particularly rating as one of the top places to live in the UK.

Don't just take our word for it, why not read what our trainees say about their experience in the North of Scotland, just go to our trainee blogs.

Thursday, 30 January 2014

For The Skiers!

Interested in GP Training?  Enjoy your skiing?  There is only one place to be, The North of Scotland! Conditions this year are positively alpine, especially on the West Coast.  Glencoe and Nevis Range are just up the road for our trainees on the Rural Track Program in Oban and Fort William.

Conditions on the east side of Scotland at Glenshee, The Lecht and Cairngorm are almost as good with excellent cover on the upper runs for our trainees in Grampian and Caledonian programs to enjoy!

So if skiing is your thing, there really is only one place to apply for, as evidenced by these photos from Glencoe this week!!

More snow at Scots resorts than 2010 Winter Olympics site

Thursday, 23 January 2014

For The Musicians Amongst You!

One of the great things about the north of Scotland is the breadth of activities on offer outside medicine. Here is a short piece from Tim Jones - who, when he is not playing music, is Training Programme Director for the Grampian programme.

Monday, 20 January 2014


This year's Winterwatch on BBC2 comes from the Mar Lodge Estate on Deeside, Grampian.  The program is on nightly this week at 8pm Monday to Wednesday and 9pm on Thursday.  So why not watch it and get a feel for some of the fantastic wildlife opportunities open to you in the Cairngorms. This whole areas is within easy reach for those on both the Grampian and Caledonian schemes.

If you are interested in wildlife or life in the mountains, there is only one place to be, so come to the North of Scotland!

Watch the episodes on iplayer:-

Saturday, 11 January 2014

Aberdeen Community Health Village

There are many exciting new developments occurring in Grampian at present.  Not only did the new Emergency Care Centre open in Aberdeen this year - we now the new Aberdeen Community Health Village. This will house many community based services in Aberdeen including the Musculoskeletal Hub, Sexual Health clinics, Geriatric clinics, Pain clinics, Cardiology clinics to name but a few. This will provide an excellent opportunity for community based learning for both trainees and established GPs.

We hope to develop clinical attachments with a number of the clinics.  The musculoskeletal hub will enable us to provide much more GP focussed musculoskeletal training than was previously provided in the orthopaedic posts in our scheme.