Internal Medicine Training Overview


Current vacancy information


To find out more about our region and Trusts please visit the Find Your Place website.


Why choose Internal Medicine Training Stage 1?


Internal Medicine Training (stage 1) provides an excellent springboard into higher medical training.  Our programme provides the opportunity to experience higher specialties either as a rotation or as a taster before committing to a specialty. At present there are around 85 IMT posts per year in NHS England – Education North East.


The 2023 GMC Trainee Results reveal that once again the North East and North Cumbria are top of the class for postgraduate medical training. The North East was ranked 1st for training in the UK overall and 1st in 7 out of 18 of the longstanding indicators the GMC uses to evaluate training and second in 3 of the other indicators. The North East and North Cumbria has also been number one for overall satisfaction for nine out of the past ten years.


The IMT stage 1 programme in NHS England – Education North East will provide excellent general training in medicine.  In the 2023 GMC survey specialty specific questions we were ranked as the top region for overall satisfaction compared to all other IMT training programmes across the UK and scored highest for giving trainees the opportunity to develop the skills required to work as a medical registrar.


All trainees expecting to enter a group 1 specialty combined with IM training stage 2 will need to complete IM years 1- 3. Those entering a group 2 specialty have the option of exiting IM training after IM year 2.


As a trainee what can I expect from my training programme?

Internal Medicine Training (stage 1)


Internal Medicine stage 1 consists of IM years 1, 2 and 3. The first 2 years will be in 2 separate trusts and consist of a rotation through specialty posts.  All IM 1 and 2 trainees will have a geriatrics post and rotate through other specialties such as:

Cardiology, respiratory, gastroenterology, acute medicine, haematology, oncology, renal medicine, rheumatology, dermatology, neurology, infectious diseases, clinical pharmacology and therapeutics, endocrinology and diabetes, palliative care and stroke medicine.

All rotations will provide experience of acute unselected medical take. This is likely to involve periods on a call rota as well as an intensive block in the admissions unit/medical receiving ward. All trainees will have dedicated time to gain critical care experience, usually a 10-12 week ICM block during IMY2.

All IMY 1 trainees will have the opportunity to attend simulated procedural training and there is further human factors and simulation training in IMY 2 or 3. We also offer extensive resources to support trainees successfully completing full MRCP.

The IMT year 3 in North East and North Cumbria is an important training year and structured specifically to support trainees in building on their existing capabilities and ensure they become confident and capable registrars on the acute medical take.  There is a supported introduction to working as a medical registrar on call and a spine of acute unselected take running throughout the training year. In addition, there is enhanced access to outpatients and personal development time.

In IMT year 3, trainees will gain experience in acute medicine and other medical specialties. IMT year 3 posts may be in any of the trusts that host IM year 1 or 2 trainees, but will often be in one of the trusts the trainee has spent IMY1 or 2. Possible specialties include geriatrics, acute medicine, cardiology, respiratory, gastroenterology, haematology, oncology, renal medicine, rheumatology, neurology, infectious diseases, clinical pharmacology and therapeutics, endocrinology and diabetes and stroke medicine. All 3 years will usually be allocated at the time of recruitment.

Progression to the next year of training will always be dependent on a successful ARCP outcome. All IM trainees will be offered an interim review to review their progress prior to ARCP as well as ongoing high-quality educational supervision.

Some specialty trainees have expressed reluctance to being placed at North Cumbria University Hospital NHS Trust due to the additional commuting that this often entails. We understand that for some trainees this places significant extra demands upon their time and sometimes upon their financial situation. In recognition of this and to incentivise trainees being placed in North Cumbria University Hospitals we have secured an agreement that any specialty trainee, regardless of grade, placed there from August 2021 will be eligible for a single “Targeted Enhanced Recruitment Scheme” gross payment of £7,000 for a 12-month placement (or pro rata if the placement is less than 12 months). This will be subject to terms and conditions and the payment will be subject to tax. Note that there is nothing we can do about the payment being taxable as regulations are set by HMRC, not ourselves. The payment is being generously provided by North Cumbria Integrated Care and Cumbria, Northumberland Tyne and Wear NHS Foundation Trusts.

The intention is that you will receive payment via your employer, the Lead Employer Trust, within the first couple of months of your training placement in North Cumbria. We are informing our networks of this now to make doctors in training aware prior to making their ranking selections because, in some specialties, trainees are asked to express choices about where they are placed and this information may affect their choices. For rotations where you will automatically be placed at North Cumbria University Hospitals as part of your required training programme, you will also be entitled to receive this payment.

It is important to remember the final decision on trainee placement allocation will remain with your training programme director, who will take into account curriculum requirements, the individual trainee’s needs and fairness.’

A list of example rotations can be viewed here:  North East and Cumbria Programmes list.

Please note that rotations are subject to change.

Posts may be added or withdrawn from the programme during the life-cycle of the programme as service configurations change


What our trainees say:


"I'd always intended to return to the North West on completion of medical school but fell in love with the North East and all it has to offer; I especially love how both the coast and the countryside are on our doorstep. The teaching and medical training in the North East is excellent, the people are friendly and there are lots of opportunities available to build portfolio and CV. I honestly wouldn't want to train anywhere else" 


"As a trainee in a large cohort it is easy to feel quite anonymous, especially when your school of training has so many Trusts and individuals to liaise with. However, I've personally felt very well supported by each of the training programme directors, specialty programme coordinator and HR officer for the school of IMT at HEENE, and believe the team truly cares about my career development. The facilitators recruited for our regional teaching have been very engaged in our education, with topics that have been well tailored for us as future medical registrars through practical approaches to medical problems. There are number of hospitals spread throughout a large geographical area but no matter where you work there is a friendly culture - it's been a privilege to work with so many conscientious and caring individuals of all healthcare professional roles, and to witness some excellent examples of clinical leadership from the consultants heading the multidisciplinary teams"


“The staff and patients are so friendly here. Consultants and registrars will go out of their way to help you get onto the training programme you want to, helping with references, audits and giving research recommendations.”


“When I was sitting PACES, I was working in one of the district general hospitals. Consultants and registrars gave up their own free time after work and at lunchtimes to go through bedside teaching and examinations to give me the best chance at passing. I felt like they really supported and guided me through it and they were as happy as I was when I passed. That hospital was like a little family and everyone who works there seems to love it.”


“I came here for university and never left, so if that isn't a glowing endorsement of Newcastle, its university and the north east, I don't know what is!”


“I think the teaching programme is excellent.  It is informative, relevant and taught by people who are enthusiastic and engaging.  It is some of the best postgraduate teaching I have ever had.”


“Coming from a large tertiary hospital I was not sure of what to expect of a DGH. I have enjoyed every aspect of it. The consultants are all very approachable and that makes my job easier! There are also more procedural opportunities in a DGH which greatly enhances the portfolio.”


“I love that no matter how hard the job gets sometimes, all I have to do is go and spend some time speaking to my patients to remember why I do what I do, and why it was definitely the best career choice.”

Information for Current Trainees

Access essential information on regulations, study leave, certification, assessment and the curriculum.

Information for trainers and educators

Development and guidance on becoming a trainer, standards for trainers, essential documentation for clinical and educational supervision including guidance for GP trainers,  Trust and out-of-hours supervisors, plus news about the latest courses and conferences.


Potential Applicant

Visit our Recruitment website to find out what it's like to be a GP trainee in the north east and north Cumbria.