Why urgent and emergency care?

Emergency care as an area of medicine has grown dramatically in profile over recent years, the unpredictable and challenging nature of the work proving the real challenge which appeals to a certain type of person; one who likes to know that every day will be a challenge, that every day will be different and they will always need to be thinking on their feet, dealing with pressure and testing themselves to the limit.

On top of that it is an area of medicine which presents real opportunity for those seeking to keep up with times ahead.

Surgeon Captain Jason Smith Royal Navy Consultant in Emergency Medicine, Derriford Hospital, Plymouth

"I have been involved in supervising intercalating medical students on this programme since 2005, and I can’t recommend it highly enough."

Surgeon Captain Jason Smith Royal Navy
Consultant in Emergency Medicine, Derriford Hospital, Plymouth

Royal College of Emergency Medicine Professor, Defence Professor of Emergency Medicine, Academic Department of Military Emergency Medicine, Royal Centre for Defence Medicine, Honorary Professor in Emergency Medicine, Faculty of Medicine and Dentistry

"From the student perspective, the benefits are numerous. Many students are interested in urgent and emergency care, but are frustrated that they do not get a lot of exposure to emergency medicine during their undergraduate years. This programme allows them to develop that interest and gives them the opportunity to concentrate on it for a whole year, becoming part of an emergency department team, as well as gaining a broader understanding of the emergency care system as a whole. In terms of career, I think it gives students the 'something else' that many CVs don't have, particularly when applying for popular training rotations and future employment.
Students also have the opportunity to get involved with research and audit in their host departments, and several of our previous students have presented work at national or international conferences, and authored peer-reviewed publications, which is not common at their stage of training.
From a departmental perspective, it is a privilege to host a BSc student, as it gives us the opportunity to grow clinicians of the future with an interest in urgent and emergency care. Some have gone on to follow a career in emergency medicine, but for those who have chosen other career pathways, I think an understanding of how the emergency care system works will be valuable no matter what career they choose."