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HESA and GMC collaborate on medical school data

HESA and GMC have agreed to coordinate the collection of information about the education of medical students in order to reduce the workload of universities.

As part of its drive to minimise burden on universities of official data returns, HESA (the Higher Education Statistics Agency) has signed a contract with the General Medical Council (GMC) to provide them with education and assessment data on medical students. The information, which GMC currently collects directly from medical schools, is used in the UKMED database to research medical education in the UK, and in workforce planning for the NHS. By exploiting HESA’s expertise in gathering data both GMC and universities will benefit from efficiency savings.

GMC will also benefit from HESA’s innovative Data Futures programme, currently in development, which will meet the data needs of many more organisations who currently gather their own data directly form universities.

Kirsty White, Assistant Director for Education Operations at the GMC, said: "Working with HESA to share data has helped both organisations improve our understanding of medical education courses. The data from HESA is supporting ground-breaking new research on selection methods for entry to medical school and training pathways through the UK Medical Education Database, which provides only anonymised data to researchers under strict usage contracts. This work is also enabling the GMC to reduce the cost of regulation for individual universities while supporting our statutory role in securing high standards of medical education and training."

Paul Clark, HESA’s Chief Executive, said “I’m delighted that GMC have chosen to use HESA data to populate their official database of medical students. Using HESA data for this purpose will both minimise the burden of data submission on HE providers, and save GMC time and effort. GMC will also will benefit from HESA’s independent expertise and the growing infrastructure of data standards and governance in the higher education sector.”


Notes for editors

HESA is the recognised source of data on higher education in the UK. Its experts collect, analyse, and disseminate accurate and comprehensive statistical information on all aspects of UK higher education to support the strategic aims of its users and enhance the effectiveness of the sector as a whole. It is a charity and a company limited by guarantee. It operates as an independent organisation, working in close partnership with higher education providers, regulators, funders, government departments, policy makers, and other stakeholders.

GMC helps to protect patients and improve medical education and practice in the UK by setting standards for students and doctors.

The UK Medical Education Database (UKMED) provides a platform for collating data on the performance of UK medical students and trainee doctors across their education and future career. UKMED data is used for research purposes only and is not used to monitor or make decisions about individual students or doctors.

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