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First physician associates start training at #Basildon University Hospital

11 Oct First physician associates start training at #Basildon University Hospital

The first intake of physician associates have started their clinical training at Basildon University Hospital.

Once the six trainees have completed their second year of study and passed their exams, they will be able to perform patient history and examinations and carry out more of the day to day ward based ‘doctor’ tasks. This will alleviate pressure on the ward nursing staff and on consultants, whilst also providing better care for patients.

Although the role of physician associate has existed in America for several decades, it is a relatively new post in the UK.

Dr Anupama Nandagudi, consultant rheumatologist and physician associate lead, said: “We have worked with Anglia Ruskin University to provide this training along with other hospitals in Essex.

“The role of physician associate will potentially fill rota gaps, whilst providing quality, safe care for our patients as seen in other places in UK. We are looking forward to provide them excellent training and warmly welcome them into the Trust.”

The six students have already completed a year of medical study. The next year will see them complete placements in surgery, medicine, obstetrics and gynaecology, paediatrics and emergency care, before sitting their final exams. On completion they can undertake roles at the FY1 level.

Jon Kyffin, simulation lead for BTUH, said: “They are quite a small group, but they seem very keen to begin learning. I think they will become a real asset to the Trust.”

Dr Eqram Rahman, coordinator from Anglia Ruskin University, explained that the course was a first for the university following national guidance from Health Education England.

He said: “Once we had the course outline, we contacted our healthcare partners to find out what interest there was. Basildon expressed an interest and it has gone from there. We are very pleased to be working with Basildon University Hospital to offer these placements to these students.”