Introducing the Community and Rural Education Route (CARER) programme
As Wales sees a critical shortfall in the number of doctors to serve the increasing patient demand generated by a growing and aging population, we have joined up with two other Welsh universities to pilot a scheme designed to bring young doctors to North and Mid Wales.
The CARER (Community and Rural Education Route) programme, run in partnership with Aberystwyth and Bangor Universities, will give Cardiff medical students the opportunity to have a year of their education delivered in GP practices and hospitals in North and Mid Wales, giving them invaluable experience of working closely with clinicians and patients in community settings.
The new scheme will build on the University’s existing practice of ensuring its medical students are offered placements all over the country in a wide variety of settings and complements. The first group of 12 students commenced their CARER journey in September 2018. They will complete their third year in these locations before returning to Cardiff to finish their degrees.
During this year long placement (referred to as a ‘Longitudinal Integrated Clerkship’ or ‘LIC’) the students work towards the same learning outcomes from the same innovative curriculum as their peers in Cardiff, under the guidance of a small dedicated team of experts.
The first programme of its kind in Wales, initially CARER will only be available for existing third year medical students. Educational institutions from around the world have been running LIC programmes for over 15 years.
Some of the positive elements reported from similar programmes include:
- students acquiring an enhanced understanding of patient needs
- better-developed communication skills
- stronger working relationships with patients, fellow students and healthcare professionals.
You can follow the students’ journeys, from clinical skills classes and GP consultations, to mountain climbing and 50km runs by visiting blogs.cardiff.ac.uk/CARER. A group of the students taking part in the pilot are sharing their experiences.
This is a shortened version of the full article that features in edition 30 of ReMEDy.