Health providers from across Lincolnshire have joined forces with the county’s politicians and educational establishments to campaign for a medical school to be brought to the area.
A letter from the Lincolnshire Local Medical Committee has been sent to Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt urging him to prioritise the creation of a medical school to help “support a struggling health economy.”
The petition sent on March 3 argues that a Lincolnshire medical school would encourage senior clinicians to relocate to the county, reducing the need for locums, and improve patient care.
United Lincolnshire Hospitals Trust is the largest hospital trust in England to not have a medical school attached.
The letter has been signed by six Lincolnshire MPs, all eight council chief executives, chairperson of the Lincolnshire Health Scrutiny Committee, pro vice chancellor of the University of Lincoln, medical directors from all of the health trusts in Lincolnshire, four CCG clinical leads, GP representatives, three consultant representatives from hospitals, and the medical director of Healthwatch Lincolnshire.
Campaigners are now hoping to hold talks with the Health Secretary and the General Medical Committee to get the proposed project moving.
Dr Kieran Sharrock, Medical Director of the Lincolnshire Local Medical Committee, said: “One of the factors which has historically made recruitment of medical staff to Lincolnshire difficult has been the absence of a medical school here.
“Medical schools attract doctors of all specialities and all levels of seniority. Not having a medical school in Lincolnshire has led to a “brain drain” of talent, with doctors choosing to work in other parts of the country rather than coming to Lincolnshire.
“It is essential for the long term sustainability of health services in Lincolnshire, that a medical school be established here.”