Feeds

NHS looks to prevent Mtas repeat

Starts consultation on not screwing up

Next gen security for virtualised datacentres

The NHS has published a consultation document on the use of a national computer system to manage recruitment of junior doctors, in a bid to avoid a repeat of this year's debacle.

The computerised Medical Training Application Scheme (Mtas) was aimed at modernising the process for junior doctors to apply for training, but technical problems and security breaches meant that many of the best applicants did not get an interview.

In an attempt to avoid a repeat of this year's recruitment problems, the NHS Modernising Medical Careers (MMC) programme board has published the consultation document on how it can improve processes for next year.

The issue of whether applications should be managed using a national computer portal followed by local handling, or by entirely local processing, is described by the MMC board as "possibly the most contentious issue in the decisions to improve recruitment in 2008".

It says the system did not crash but it was very slow near the closing date for applications, causing many applicants difficulties in completing and submitting their forms. Two security breaches led to a decision to close the system and switch to local processes.

The board, however, claims that the same system was successfully used for GP recruitment, reducing the workload for recruiters. It also points to an independent audit, as part of the Douglas Review, which found that the system was "stable, performed acceptably and contained the necessary functionality to be fit for purpose".

In principle, says the board, a national computer portal would bring several advantages. It would assure applicants of a consistent process, provide a single place for applicants to make applications, allow national monitoring and data analysis to manage improvements and influence future process design, provide an audit trail and reduce administrative burdens.

The board concedes there is currently a lack of confidence among junior doctors and consultants. There is also a risk that an acceptable, user friendly system for 2008 will not be ready in the short timescale.

Policy decisions for 2008, for recommendation to ministers, need to be made at the board's meeting on 1 October to allow sufficient time to design and implement a system before recruitment starts in early January 2008.

The deadline for responses to the proposals is 25 September 2007.

This article was originally published at Kablenet.

Kablenet's GC weekly is a free email newsletter covering the latest news and analysis of public sector technology. To register click here.

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
Detroit losing MILLIONS because it buys CHEAP BATTERIES – report
Man at hardware store was right: name brands DO last longer
Yes, but what are your plans if a DRAGON attacks?
Local UK gov outs most ridiculous FoI requests...
Munich considers dumping Linux for ... GULP ... Windows!
Give a penguinista a hug, the Outlook's not good for open source's poster child
Govt control? Hah! It's IMPOSSIBLE to have a successful command economy
Even Moore's Law can't help the architects of statism now
Snowden on NSA's MonsterMind TERROR: It may trigger cyberwar
Plus: Syria's internet going down? That was a US cock-up
New voting rules leave innocent Brits at risk of SPAM TSUNAMI
Read the paperwork very carefully - or fall victim to marketing shysters
e-Borders fiasco: Brits stung for £224m after US IT giant sues UK govt
Defeat to Raytheon branded 'catastrophic result'
prev story

Whitepapers

Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Solving today's distributed Big Data backup challenges
Enable IT efficiency and allow a firm to access and reuse corporate information for competitive advantage, ultimately changing business outcomes.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.