Wrexham Maelor Hospital has been named as a favourite destination of medical students because of the “great quality” training they receive.
Year three medical students from Cardiff University voted the hospital the best in Wales for their placements and all three North Wales acute hospitals filled the top three places in feedback for the 2016-17 academic year.
The training satisfaction is further reflected in the high uptake of junior doctor positions by Cardiff University students this year in Wrexham.
Of 24 junior doctor vacancies, 19 vacancies have been filled by Cardiff students who had completed training placements in Wrexham.
The student feedback from all year groups revealed that support is very good in Wrexham Maelor hospital and that students feel they have an ‘excellent’ level of teaching and support.
During a medical placement students work with junior doctors and have a consultant as a supervisor.
Andrea Taylor, who leads the undergraduate programme said: “We are delighted with the feedback of our medical students from our partner university.
“We have been working extremely hard to make sure student doctors have the support and experiences they need to become excellent medics here in North Wales and this feedback is supported by a record number of students this year from Cardiff opting to take jobs with us as junior doctors.
“Our teaching has superb feedback and we feel that students get a really positive experience of working and living in Wrexham.
Emergency medicine consultant and honorary senior lecturer Fiona Rae said: “The team who look after the students are great.
“Everyone plays their part, from the administrative staff, to the junior medical staff and clinical tutors, they all make sure the students have the most productive experience they can.”
Medical student Syakirah Aziz, 25, from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, spoke of her enthusiasm for working in North Wales because of the “lovely” people and “amazing” training she has received at Wrexham Maelor hospital.
She said: “I did a placement on paediatrics as a student and I loved it. There was a huge variety of work I could do in paediatrics.
”I got to go to the special care baby unit and see deliveries – it was great experience.
“I get lots of support and help here. They organise neo-natal life support training for adults so we get training in this area which you don’t get at other hospitals. It’s amazing that you get this training here.
“I’m from Malaysia and I came over here to study. I’m hoping to stay in Wales. I really like it here. It’s homey and the people are lovely.
“The cities in the UK are fine, but being in North Wales feels more like home here.
“I enjoyed our placements and lots of my friends are coming back too because we have all loved our training so much.
“The placements, undergraduate training and support sold it to me and have made me want to come back.”
Medical student Elin Morgan, 23, from Caernarfon, said: “I want to be in North Wales. Wrexham Maelor is the biggest hospital in North Wales but even though it is big, everyone is so friendly.
“Eventually I want to be a GP, but at the moment in this coming year I will be working in vascular, respiratory and palliative care and I’m so excited by it.”
Luke Nelson, 22, from Liverpool, added: “I did reproductive medicine in my first placement in Betsi and then obstetrics and gynaecology.
“Now in this placement I am shadowing a junior doctor. My placement was so interesting and it has made me want to pursue a reproductive pathway in medicine.
“I have had all the benefits of being in a big hospital in Wrexham but it’s still friendly and the staff are really tight-knit and look after you.”
The students are taught by a key team at Wrexham Maelor and clinical skills tutor Amanda Dawson spoke of the successful simulation training that they offer at the hospital.
She said: “We run many simulations that cover medical emergencies that medical students may come across in the clinical setting.
“This method of teaching provides the medical students with a safe environment to learn and prepares them for real life situations.”
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