TRAINING given to doctors working in a North-East hospital has been praised by the General Medical Council (GMC) in its review of sites across the region.

The regulator visited Darlington Memorial Hospital as part of its review of Health Education England’s North East and North Cumbria region.

Region-wide, it found that education and training are a "valued part of organisational culture" and that strong relationships between hospitals and Newcastle University Medical School help improve the experience of doctors in training.

The contribution of clinical teaching fellows at hospitals across the region was also recognised as evidence of the commitment to support trainee doctors to reach their potential.

Darlington Memorial Hospital was praised for its comprehensive inductions, where students meet with the tutors responsible for them eight weeks before beginning a placement. Students found this beneficial for their induction.

However, administrative errors meant some students were not expected when they arrived for a placement at the hospital, resulting in a lack of support.

A spokesman for County Durham and Darlington NHS Foundation Trust, said: “We’re delighted that the education and training we give doctors and medical students at Darlington Memorial Hospital, has been praised by the GMC in its review of sites across the North-East.

"We work hard to ensure students joining us are well prepared and have a comprehensive induction, including meeting their tutors eight weeks before the start of their placement.

"We’re pleased that students reported the benefits of this. The report also provides us with useful feedback from which we can learn.

"Although we always let ward managers and senior doctors know when a student will start a placement with them, we’ll act on this feedback to ensure the whole ward medical, nursing and administrative team are aware so students are welcomed by those on duty at the time and we’ll be monitoring this closely.”

The GMC visited the North-East as part of its routine schedule of visits to check standards are being met, challenges are identified and to encourage the sharing of best practice across the board.

Professor Colin Melville, the GMC’s medical director and director of educations and standards, said: "We’re pleased to see educators are valued and supported in their roles and provided with opportunities to complete formal qualifications to further their careers.

"However, more consistent administration of medical student placements will ensure that all students have the best educational experience from their time at Darlington Memorial Hospital."