-Medical-Student apprenticeship providers

What Is The Doctor Apprenticeship Scheme?

One of the most fascinating announcements for apprenticeship providers and young adults considering their options is an announcement by the NHS that a pathway has been opened for people to earn whilst they learn to become medical doctors.

The announcement by Health Education England provoked a lot of reactions and discourse, as well as confusion as to what such a scheme would entail.

The Medical Doctor Degree Apprenticeship is a five-year scheme where a candidate can work as a trainee medical practitioner whilst studying towards a medical degree and attending medical school.

The key difference between this and simply going to medical school is that an apprentice will be earning a salary and does not have to pay any tuition fees, opening the door to people from less advantaged backgrounds who have the academic attainment to undertake a medical degree but lack the financial backing.

Medical students traditionally do not get paid until they complete their degree, which can be at best a disincentive and at worst an outright barrier during a time when more doctors are needed in the UK than ever before.

Whilst applicant criteria will be set by employers in the same manner as any other degree apprenticeship, candidates will need similar academic qualifications and will be expected to complete their medical degree, Medical Licensing Assessment and any other elements of training.

They also must meet the requirements to be added to the Medical Register, meaning that at the end of the apprenticeship period, they will be fully-qualified doctors.

The details of the apprenticeship side of the scheme are still being finalised ahead of the September 2024 pilot start date and job openings will not be opened before next year. 

Despite this, it is a potential option for people who have non-medical degrees or high levels of college-level attainment who believed that medical school was out of financial reach.