OBJECTIVES: Modernising Medical Careers (MMC) emerged in response to acknowledged problems in training in the Senior House Officer grade. The objective of this study was to assess the effect of the Foundation Year 2 (F2) training programme on career orientation in the Northern Ireland Deanery.
METHODS: A prospective survey-based study was conducted for all F2 doctors participating in the Northern Ireland Foundation Programme. Career orientation was investigated using the Specialty Choice Inventory 45 (SCI45) at the start (Q1) and end (Q2) of the F2 year. Specialty choice was collated after the outcome of specialty recruitment in 2008.
RESULTS: There were 231 F2 doctors in programme during the first F2 year in 2006-2007. 147 (M=65, F=82) and 106 (M=55, F=51) completed questionnaires at Q1 and Q2. Male F2 doctors scored significantly higher in the action orientation (54.0 vs. 50.0, p<0.001) and need for assertiveness (53.0 vs. 48.0, p=0.005) subscales at both time points as well as Q1 detail is crucial (57.0 vs. 51.0, p=0.014) and Q2 independent specialty (53.0 vs. 46.0, p=0.016). Female F2 doctors scored significantly higher in the educating patients subscale at both time-points (44.0 vs. 46.0, p=0.009 and 46.0 vs. 47.0, p=0.03). Analysis of SCI45 subscale scores suggested that males tended to favour the surgical specialties while females favoured the care of the elderly and paediatric specialties. Overall only 29% of doctors were successfully appointed to a specialty in which they had expressed an interest at Q1 whilst 47.8% were selected to specialist training for their declared specialty interest at Q2.
CONCLUSIONS: Despite introducing MMC with a coordinated UK wide specialty application process (MTAS), a detrimental effect on their career orientation was not evident. Pragmatic career choices based on lifestyle may be the reason why female doctors expressed a preference for care of the elderly and paediatrics while their male colleagues favoured acute, more surgically biased specialties.
|Number of pages||8|
|Journal||The Ulster Medical Journal|
|Publication status||Published - May 2010|
- Career Choice
- Data Collection
- Education, Medical/methods
- Northern Ireland
- Students, Medical/psychology