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An NHS Deanery was a regional organisation, within the structure of the UK National Health Service (NHS), responsible for postgraduate medical and dental training. Deanerys have been replaced as of 2013 with Local Training and Education Boards (LETBs), that provide a similar service.
Each Deanery commissions postgraduate medical and dental education, to standards set by the General Medical and Dental Councils. Deaneries are each advised by a Specialty Training Committee (STC), which includes Consultants.
A Deanery, or LETB, oversees medical education and workforce management within a given area of the UK. This begins as doctors start their initial Foundation Programme (F1/F2) jobs, where they are involved in monitoring progress through these two years and provide a framework for assessing competency. The deanery also handles the hiring of doctors into Speciality Training Programmes and then their subsequent training for between 5 and 8 years. This includes allocation of specific hospital jobs, provision of educational supervision and assessment of suitability to progress into further years of training.
Deaneries have been criticised in the past for not providing accurate and detailed information to applicants who have no alternative methods of finding employment within the UK, in particular for failing reliably to tell applicants exactly when and where jobs will start, what hours will be, and what their salary will be. The BMA have observed "It's hard to imagine another profession where you could start salaried employment without knowing how much you'll be paid in six months' time. That's been the reality for junior doctors for years, but it may be about to change."
As of June 2008, the Employment Agency Standards Inspectorate have ruled that deaneries should be legally classified as employment agencies, which calls into question the legality of existing recruitment processes. This has led Remedy UK to call for junior doctors, who are currently employed on a series of short-term contracts, to be given a single unified contract covering the whole process.
Recent changes in UK legislation mean that Deaneries must give preference to applicants from the UK or the European Union. This is likely over the medium term to change the make-up of the hospital registrar workforce, in which over recent years candidates from developing countries in Asia and Africa have been strongly represented.
- "Deaneries face "agency" tag". Doctors.net.uk. Retrieved 2008-06-16.
- "RemedyUK Magazine - RemedyUK welcomes ESAI decision". Remedy UK. Retrieved 2008-06-16.
- "Medical workforce planning". NHS employers. Retrieved 2008-06-16.
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