UK and Ireland Collaboration: Comparing Preparedness and Anxiety Amongst Junior Doctors

Duff, Juliette, Davis, Jordan, Van Hamel, Clare and Offiah, Gozie (2021) UK and Ireland Collaboration: Comparing Preparedness and Anxiety Amongst Junior Doctors.


Background: The UK Foundation Programme consists of a longstanding mandatory induction period, prior
to starting as a junior doctor. In 2019, Ireland introduced a standardised paid induction programme for their interns. The aim of the induction period is to bridge the gap between medical school and clinical work.

Summary of Work: UK and Irish junior doctors completed a survey after their induction period.
Collaboration between Ireland and the UK has facilitated analysis of these responses, enabling us to
compare perceived preparedness and confidence in multiple areas of practice and to identify any key areas of strength and areas of concern amongst trainees.

Summary of Results: 1302 F1s (18%) and 91 Irish interns (12%) completed the post-induction surveys. 62% of UK F1s indicated that they felt prepared for their role as compared to 44% of the Irish cohort. 75% of the UK F1s indicated that they had regular access to simulation training during their medical school as compared to
39% of the Irish interns. Confidence in prescribing was generally slightly higher for the UK F1 cohort
compared to the Irish interns. The two groups showed very similar trends regarding confidence across
different types of prescribing. For example, both cohorts described feeling least confident in prescribing
insulin and psychiatric medication. 40% of the Irish cohort felt significantly anxious overall prior to
commencing clinical work as compared to 34% of the UK cohort.

Discussion and Conclusions: This collaboration across Ireland and the UK has allowed us to consider how
prepared graduates are for clinical practice and demonstrates that a streamlined induction programme
could benefit both cohorts. The UK has a more established induction programme which seems to enable
improved preparation of their F1 intake. However, both cohorts indicated that they lack confidence in
prescribing. This is a key area of emphasis for future induction programmes in both the UK and Ireland.

Take-home Messages: The induction programme is a valued experience to both UK F1s and Irish interns F1s overall felt more prepared and less anxious than interns Prescribing remains a key area of anxiety for bothgroup

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