Published: 06/03/2003, Volume II3, No. 5844 Page 10

The Department of Health has announced plans to streamline the training of junior doctors, with newly qualified juniors initially undertaking a two-year foundation programme covering core clinical skills before specialist training.The plans build on the responses to a report from chief medical officer Sir Liam Donaldson published last August, and pilot sites for the new training arrangements are expected to start this August, with a major implementation programme from 2004.The plans were welcomed by the British Medical Association, but it warned that time should not be cut from the training for GPs 'simply as a quick-fix solution to the dire recruitment problems in general practice'.