Whether you need to speak to your local GP or access an NHS pharmacy online, most of us will need to call upon the services of healthcare professionals at one point or another. There are currently 185 universities offering courses in medicine across the UK, but despite this, the NHS is crying out for trained medical professionals.
We have gathered a range of data concerning the current state of UK medical schools to reveal which cities and universities are the best for becoming a healthcare professional.
Blackpool Teaching Hospitals have 368 sites – more than any other NHS trust
NHS sites can be found within a broader trust and encompass institutions which help care for the community, including hospitals and clinics. The list below reveals which NHS trusts are home to the most sites as of 2022.
1. Blackpool Teaching Hospitals – 368 sites
With 368 sites as of 2022, the Blackpool Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust has the most sites of every NHS trust on our list. Blackpool Teaching Hospitals were awarded trust status in 2007, but unfortunately, it has recently gained a reputation as one of the lowest-performing trusts in the NHS regarding patient waiting times.
2. Birmingham Community Healthcare – 338 sites
As the name suggests, the Birmingham Community Healthcare Foundation Trust is home to sites across Birmingham and the West Midlands region. From rehabilitation to therapy, the 338 sites here provide services for all ages, and the wide range of facilities here has earned this NHS trust second place on our list.
3. Central London Community Healthcare – 278 sites
Completing our top three list of the NHS trusts with the most sites, totalling 278, is the Central London Community Healthcare NHS Trust. Established in the UK’s capital, this trust has been providing services for the people of London for over ten years.
With over 18,000 medical graduates, the University of Manchester has trained more doctors than any other medical school
Last year, the UK saw more student doctors graduate than ever, but which universities have produced the most doctors over the years? We have compiled data from as far back as 1907 to reveal the medical schools with the highest number of graduates.
1. University of Manchester – 18,167 graduate doctors
Taking the award as the medical school with the most graduate doctors is the University of Manchester. This medical school has seen more than 18,000 graduate doctors pass through its doors over the years, which is unsurprising considering that this is the largest medical school in the country.
2. University of Glasgow – 15,947 graduate doctors
The medical school at the University of Glasgow is notoriously competitive, where only the best of the best are accepted. Despite the strict application process, almost 16,000 student doctors have graduated from this university, the second highest of any medical school on our list.
3. University of Edinburgh – 13,933 graduate doctors
Medicine has been taught at the University of Edinburgh for centuries, and around 14,000 doctors have graduated from this medical school. Even though this may sound like a small number of graduates from centuries of teaching, this medical school has the third-highest number of graduate doctors on our list.
North East England has more postgraduate trainee doctors than any other UK region – 13.5 per 10,000 residents
After graduating from medical school, the next step for junior doctors is to complete a postgraduate degree where they will receive specialist training. The list below reveals the regions with the most postgraduate trainees per 10,000 residents.
1. North East England – 13.5 postgraduate trainees per 10,000 residents
Medical schools in North East England, including Durham and Newcastle University, are training over 3,500 postgraduate doctors as of 2023, equating to 13.5 trainees per 10,000 residents. This figure makes North East England the most populated region for postgraduate trainee doctors in the UK.
2. London – 13.2 postgraduate trainees per 10,000 residents
As the most populated region in the UK, it is unsurprising that London has the highest total number of postgraduate trainees as of 2023, totalling over 11,000. However, when compared against the region’s population, London falls shy of the top spot with 13.2 postgraduate trainees per 10,000 residents.
3. Yorkshire and the Humber – 11.6 postgraduate trainees per 10,000 residents
Completing our top three list of UK regions with the most postgraduate trainee doctors is Yorkshire and the Humber. As of 2023, Yorkshire and the Humber is home to over 6,300 postgraduate trainees, which equates to around 11.6 trainees per 10,000 residents.
Swansea University has the biggest proportion of medical dropouts, with 4.7% of students leaving the profession
Unfortunately, working in the medical industry isn’t for everyone, and sometimes this isn’t realised by students until after they have completed their degree. The list below reveals which medical schools have the most students leaving.
1. Swansea University – 4.7% of students
Swansea University is located in Wales and offers a wide selection of undergraduate and postgraduate medicine courses. Despite these career avenues, trainees here are dropping out of the medical profession more significantly than in any other UK university, with the most recent figures estimating that around 4.7% of medical trainees have left this line of work.
2. Cambridge School of Clinical Medicine – 2.1%
The University of Cambridge has garnered a reputation as one of the most prestigious schools in the country, and its School of Clinical Medicine is no exception. Even though the medical programmes offered here are some of the most sought-after in the world, over 2% of students from this school have ended up leaving the profession.
3. Imperial College London – 1.9%
With 1.9% of its students leaving the medical profession, Imperial College London completes this top three ranking. This university has an acceptance rate of less than 40%, making enrolling more challenging. However, the reality of working as a doctor does not live up to the same standards that students expect when completing their degree.
Almost three-quarters of Lancaster Medical School students are clinically appointed in the UK – the highest proportion of any medical school in the country
The following ranking on our Healthcare Student Report reveals which medical schools are responsible for the highest percentage of students clinically appointed in the UK.
1. Lancaster Medical School – 72.2% of students
According to the most recent data, Lancaster Medical School has the most significant proportion of graduates appointed in the UK. Over 72% of medical students here have been chosen for a medical-based job in the UK. Of the other respondents, 20% decided to take their qualifications and work elsewhere, and the remaining graduates took a break from the industry altogether.
2. Queen’s University Belfast – 68.9% of students
Almost 69% of all respondents from Queen’s University Belfast said they had accepted a clinical job in the UK – the second-highest on our list. This university has been recognised for its career prospects in various medical-related fields, and its high position on our ranking supports this.
3. Leicester Medical School – 67.1% of students
Leicester Medical School completes our top three list of institutions with the highest percentage of UK-based clinical appointments, totalling 67.1%. Located in the East Midlands, this medical school is home to a Simulation Centre. At this state-of-the-art facility, students can gain medical experience in a stress-free environment before taking their skills out into the real world.
Of all the UK cities, you’re most likely to find healthcare vacancies in Lancaster, with more than 300 opportunities per 10,000 residents
It is no secret that the UK is crying out for healthcare workers, but which areas have the most job opportunities in the industry? Here’s what we found.
We used NHS Digital to find the number of sites in each NHS Trust as of 2022.
We used GMC to find the total number of graduates from each UK medical school as of 2023. The University of London was removed from our ranking as it encompasses a range of universities.
We used GMC to find the number of postgraduate trainees in each UK region as of 2023.
Using GOV.UK population data, we divided the total number of postgraduate trainees by the population of each region before multiplying this by 10,000 to find the number of postgraduate trainees per 10,000 residents in each area. Any regions for which we couldn’t see all the data were removed.
We used the most recent figures from the UK Foundation Programme to find the following data as of 2019: the percentage of students who have left the profession in each medical school and the rate of UK clinical appointments for each medical school.
We used Indeed to find the number of current job opportunities for the terms ‘nurse,’ ‘doctor,’ and ‘dentist’ (data was collected on 28/11/2023). We added the number of jobs for each of the three terms to find an overall number of healthcare vacancies for each city.
Finally, we divided the total number of healthcare vacancies by the population of each city before multiplying this by 10,000 to find the number of healthcare vacancies per 10,000 residents for each city.
NowPatient has taken all reasonable steps to ensure that all material is factually accurate, complete, and current. However, the knowledge and experience of a qualified healthcare professional should always be sought after instead of using the information in this page. Before taking any drug, you should always speak to your doctor or another qualified healthcare provider.
The information provided here about medications is subject to change and is not meant to include all uses, precautions, warnings, directions, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or negative effects. The absence of warnings or other information for a particular medication does not imply that the medication or medication combination is appropriate for all patients or for all possible purposes.
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