Proposals to scrutinise strategic health authorities' performance on workforce planning have won overwhelming endorsement from the NHS.

A report published on Wednesday reveals that nearly 90 per cent of respondents to a consultation on the Tooke review into Modernising Medical Careers supported its recommendations.

These include improving workforce planning by placing SHAs under external scrutiny and defining the role of doctors at every career stage.

The report also proposes making changes to the structure of postgraduate doctors' training and strengthening academic links between postgraduate deaneries.

The final Tooke report also comes up with two new recommendations. One is to establish a national body, called NHS Medical Education England, to co-ordinate MMC.

The body would hold ringfenced budgets for medical education and training and scrutinise SHA commissioning of medical education and training.

The second new recommendation is to re-examine the impact the European Working Time Directive is having on junior doctors' training.

It states: "In the interest of patient safety, no-one would wish to see a return to hours of duty that impact on adequate rest and relaxation.

"But few other professions in the UK, nor medical career structures in Europe embrace the directive in the same way that it has been embraced in the UK."