Doctors have accused the government of 'hoodwinking' them into accepting controversial changes to medical training. The Department of Health ignored the profession's objections to Modernising Medical Careers, the Commons health select committee was told last Thursday.

MMC revamped junior doctors' training, introducing a new national selection process that led to 30,000 doctors chasing 23,000 specialist posts this year.

It also brought in the online recruitment system, the Medical Training Application Service, which was blighted by security breaches.

Giving evidence to the committee inquiry into MMC, Professor Steve O'Rahilly, a member of senior doctors' campaign group Fidelio, said: 'A lot of the worst aspects of MMC were thrown in at the last minute.

'The profession was brought along and then hoodwinked.'

In October, the interim report of an inquiry into MMC, chaired by Sir John Tooke, criticised medical leaders for failing to speak with one coherent voice.

Questioned by the committee about who was responsible for the problems, Sir John said that accountability for the scheme had been 'ambiguous'.

He said: 'The features which caused the biggest difficulties were handled by the workforce capacity unit, which didn't have direct accountability to either of the senior responsible officers.'

There was a 'big question' over whether the DoH had the resources or professional skills to implement policies such as MMC, he said.