Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt is to launch five new medical schools in the United Kingdom
It has been reported that Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt is set to launch five new medical schools in the United Kingdom as part of its bid to counteract shortages in a number of areas across the country.
The schools will be established in universities in Sunderland, Canterbury (linking with the University of Kent), Lincoln (in partnership with the University of Nottingham), Lancashire and Chelmsford (at Anglia Ruskin University), and will enable the development of over a thousand new doctors to these selected regions, in a government pledge to attract and retain talent in rural areas.
Over 500 new places are set to commence this September at Anglia Ruskin University, with the rest phased in over 2019 and 2020, the BBC has revealed.
The number of trained GPs in the United Kingdom have reduced dramatically over the last 10 years. With increased pressures and present shortages, in addition to the impact of Brexit, it is unknown how the healthcare sector will cope with a rising departure of European professionals, particularly across a number of specialist areas.
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Professor Ian Cumming, Chief executive of Health Education England, said: "1,500 new medical students starting by 2020 demonstrates real commitment to ensuring that we have the number of doctors we need for the NHS in the future.”
In a statement, Health and Social Care Secretary Jeremy Hunt, said: "Setting up five new medical schools is part of the biggest ever expansion of our medical and nursing workforce, which we will need to deal with the challenge of around one million more over 75s in a decade's time.
"These schools are being set up in parts of the country where it is can be hard to recruit and attract new doctors – but it will benefit the doctors everywhere as we start to eliminate the rota gaps that add so much pressure to their work."
However, Harrison Carter, co-chair of the British Medical Association's (BMA's) medical students' committee, has responded by stating: "We welcome any initiative to help increase the numbers of doctors we have. However, the students who will benefit from these new placements will take at least 10 years to train and become senior doctors so this measure won’t tackle the immediate shortage of doctors in the NHS which could become more acute following Brexit.
"There needs to be equal focus on retaining existing doctors in high-quality jobs which will provide more immediate relief to an overstretched medical workforce, as well as plugging current gaps through highly skilled migration to ensure patients continue to receive high quality care."
Check Point: Securing the future of enterprise IT
Cybersecurity solutions provider Check Point was founded in 1993 with a mission to secure ‘everything,’ and that includes the cloud. Conscious that nothing remains static in the digital world, the company prides itself on an ability to integrate new technology with its solutions. Across almost three decades in operation, Check Point, with its team of over 3,500 experts, has become adept at protecting networks, endpoints, mobile, IoT, and cloud.
“The pandemic has been somewhat of an accelerator in the evolution of cyber risk,” explains Erez Yarkoni, Global VP for Cloud Business. “We had remote workers and cloud adoption a long time beforehand, but now the volume and surface area is far greater.” Formerly a CIO for several big-name telcos before joining Check Point in 2019, Yarkoni considers the cloud to be “part of [his] heritage” and one of modern IT’s most valuable tools.
Check Point has three important ‘product families’, Quantum, CloudGuard, and Harmony, with each one providing another layer of holistic IT protection:
- Quantum: secures enterprise networks from sophisticated cyber attacks
- CloudGuard: acts as a scalable and unified cloud-native security platform for the protection of any cloud
- Harmony: protects remote users and devices from cyber threats that might compromise organisational data
However, more than just providing security, Yarkoni emphasises the need for software to be proactive and minimise the possibility of threats in the first instance. This is something Check Point assuredly delivers, “the industry recognises that preventing, not just detecting, is crucial. Check Point has one platform that gives customers the end-to-end cover they need; they don't have to go anywhere else. That level of threat prevention capability is core to our DNA and across all three product lines.”
In many ways, Check Point’s solutions’ capabilities have actually converged to meet the exact working requirements of contemporary enterprise IT. As more companies embark on their own digital transformation journeys in the wake of COVID-19, the inevitability of unforeseen threats increases, which also makes forming security-based partnerships essential. Healthcare of Ontario Pension Plan (HOOPP) sought out Check Point for this very reason when it was in the process of selecting Microsoft Azure as its cloud provider. “Let's be clear: Azure is a secure cloud, but when you operate in a cloud you need several layers of security and governance to prevent mistakes from becoming risks,” Yarkoni clarifies.
The partnership is a distinctly three-way split, with each bringing its own core expertise and competencies. More than that, Check Point, HOOPP and Microsoft are all invested in deepening their understanding of each other at an engineering and developmental level. “Both of our organisations (Check Point and Microsoft) are customer-obsessed: we look at the problem from the eyes of the customer and ask, ‘Are we creating value?’” That kind of focus is proving to be invaluable in the digital era, when the challenges and threats of tomorrow remain unpredictable. In this climate, only the best protected will survive and Check Point is standing by, ready to help.
“HOOPP is an amazing organisation,” concludes Yarkoni. “For us to be successful with a customer and be selected as a partner is actually a badge of honor. It says, ‘We passed a very intense and in-depth inspection by very smart people,’ and for me that’s the best thing about working with organisations like HOOPP.”