The increase in medical school places might be causing understandable challenges for universities, but training more doctors is nothing but a positive development for the future of the NHS and our health (Grade inflation forces ministers to pay for extra medical school places, 5 August).
We simply do not have enough doctors, which means poorer quality care, excessive workloads and higher levels of burnout. If we fail to ensure a sustainable supply of doctors, the NHS will struggle to meet future demand and patients will suffer.
This is a major problem in mental health, where the pandemic has increased demand and a lack of psychiatrists has been threatening the government’s ambitious long-term plans for improving and expanding services.
We need bold action, not quick fixes for one-off problems. The government must increase the number of medical school places to 15,000, allocating new places focusing on shortage specialties, such as psychiatry. The future of the NHS depends on it.
Dr Adrian James
President, Royal College of Psychiatrists, London
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