Please enter both an email address and a password.

Account login

Need to reset your password?  Enter the email address which you used to register on this site (or your membership/contact number) and we'll email you a link to reset it. You must complete the process within 2hrs of receiving the link.

We've sent you an email

An email has been sent to Simply follow the link provided in the email to reset your password. If you can't find the email please check your junk or spam folder and add to your address book.

Surgeons respond to General Medical Council (GMC) workforce report ‘The state of medical education and practice in the UK 2023’

13 Nov 2023

Surgeons respond to General Medical Council (GMC) workforce report ‘The state of medical education and practice in the UK 2023’

In response to the GMC 2023 workforce report ‘The state of medical education and practice in the UK’Mr Tim Mitchell, President of the Royal College of Surgeons of England (RCS England), said:

“Doctors and surgeons want to work more flexibly, and the health service must provide increased support to facilitate that need. With the NHS under such huge pressure to get waiting lists down, and record staff vacancies, it is vital NHS employers keep pace with the changing needs and composition of the profession.

“We welcome the GMC report’s finding that the number of specialty and associate specialist (SAS) doctors and locally employed doctors on the GMC’s medical register has increased substantially, now making up 24% of its total workforce. We must ensure these professionals are recognised for what they have to offer. They continue to provide high-quality services. However, they often feel undervalued and marginalised by their employers and their colleagues. By embracing SAS and LE doctors within clinical teams and providing training, education, and leadership opportunities, we will unlock the full potential of this significant and growing section of the workforce.

“The report reveals that doctors who qualified outside the UK made up just under two-thirds (63%) of the 23,838 new additions to the register in 2022. The report also notes that, even with current and upcoming increases to medical school places, the length of time it takes to train a doctor means the UK must remain an attractive option for doctors who qualify abroad for some time to come. The more we do to support doctors and surgeons arriving in the UK — ensuring that they feel valued and supported — the better the chances of retaining their services for longer.

“Although the figure has increased from 9% in 2012, the fact that only 16% of licensed doctors working in surgery are female shows there is still a lot of work to be done to make the profession appealing to more women. RCS England is pushing hard on this, through our Women in Surgery (WinS) network and our Parents in Surgery project, which aims to help current and prospective surgeons balance parenthood and a surgical career.     

“Tackling the challenges the health service currently faces hinges on having a happy and fulfilled workforce. It is good news that we are recruiting more doctors than we are losing but we cannot be complacent. We should not be losing any talented doctors or surgeons because they don’t feel valued or they do not have the flexibility in their careers they require.”

Notes to editors:

  1. The Royal College of Surgeons of England provides world-class education, assessment and development to 30,000 surgeons, dental professionals and members of the wider surgical and dental care teams, at all stages of their careers. Our vision is to see excellent surgical care for everyone. We do this by setting professional standards, facilitating research and championing the best outcomes for patients.
  2. More information on Parents in Surgery here:
  3. More information on Women in Surgery (WinS) here:
  4. More about the RCS England SAS Strategy here:
  5. For more information, please contact the Press Office: Telephone: 020 7869 6053/6054/6047; Email:; Out-of-hours media enquiries: 0207 869 6056.

Share this page: