§ Lord Rea
asked Her Majesty's Government:
Whether they will take steps to ensure that sufficient additional senior house officer posts in hospital and/or community paediatrics are created to enable all general practitioners and paediatricians in training to obtain at least one such post during their early careers.
§ Lord Skelmersdale
At 30th September 1986 there were 965 senior house officers (SHOs) in post in England, an increase of 213 (28 per cent.) since 1979. It is open to health authorities to arrange suitable training programmes to include a period in community paediatrics. There is no requirement that a trainee general practitioner should spend time at SHO level in paediatrics as part of vocational training, and not all choose to do so. We have no evidence to suggest that the current number of posts is insufficient to meet the needs of those trainees who wish to gain experience in the specialty.