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Chamber and committees

Question reference: S6W-23391

  • Asked by: Paul Sweeney, MSP for Glasgow, Scottish Labour
  • Date lodged: 29 November 2023
  • Current status: Answered by Michael Matheson on 7 December 2023


To ask the Scottish Government what exposure medical students have to psychiatric and mental health placements, and what steps are taken to encourage students to consider a career in these fields.


Following consultation with each of Scotland five medical schools most students receive taught modules on mental health and psychiatry in years three and four of their medical degrees with the opportunity to specialist mental health units on clinical placements from year four onwards. There are significant core learning requirements in relation to mental health set out by the GMC and each University ensures these are fulfilled.

The GMC also require all medical schools to provide support for the consideration of postgraduate careers and each school has their own way of doing this. For example, the University of Aberdeen hold careers fairs across the whole curriculum wherein Mental Health is always included, and the psychiatric education team engaged. Furthermore each of the medical schools have a ‘PsychSoc’ attached to them. These societies are funded by the Royal College of Psychiatrists and work with the medical schools to encourage and support medical students into a career within the psychiatric fields.