Core Medical Training

Taunton and Somerset Hospital is the main DGH for the county and serves a population of over 330,000. The hospital has 770 beds with access to full diagnostic imaging and a developing interventional cardiology service.

There is an active and busy emergency department and an acute assessment unit in the medical division. The medical unit comprises Coronary care unit with an integral catheter and pacing suite, 7 general medical wards (and an 8th in Winter), a stroke unit and a rehabilitation unit together with the medical assessment unit. There is an active haematology unit and a new oncology unit is near completion. There are close links to community hospital units through out the county;

The medical unit is;

  • Sedgemore ward- Care of Elderly/general medicine
  • Mendip ward- Care of Elderly/ gastroenterology/ general medicine
  • Dunkery ward – stroke unit (linked to Williton Hospital stroke unit)
  • Triscombe ward- neurology/ rheumatology/ rehabilitation
  • Fielding ward- cardiology/general medicine
  • Eliot ward- endocrinology/cardiology/general medicine
  • Wordsworth ward- care of elderly/ general medicine
  • Coleridge ward- respiratory/general medicine
  • CCU
  • MAU
  • Ward 9- haematology

The junior doctors are ward based with most wards having a complement of 1 F1, 1 F2, 1 ST and 2 SPR’s. The cover on MAU is 2F1’s, 2F2’s and 4 ST’s.

There are 7 ST doctors in core medical training ( mixture of ST1 and ST2), 4 GPVTS trainees in the medical division and 2 ACCS ST doctors.

There are 15 F1 and 12 F2 posts with 12 SPR’s.

The CMT rotations are usually for 24 months and made up of 6 four month attachments. It is usual for each CMT trainee to have a placement in each of the core specialities ( cardiology, respiratory, gastroenterology, elderly care and acute medicine) plus one other speciality. There is flexibility and individual trainees may be able to choose other attachments that may include- haematology, endocrinology, rheumatology/neurology or stroke medicine depending on availability and individual requirements.

Trainees will be on call for acute admissions as well as ward cover and will do nights on call when attached to MAU.

There are twice daily post-take ward rounds which are consultant led and the average 24hr take is 30-40. The cardiologists run a separate CCU ward round daily. There is a 24 hour endoscopy rota with interventions available at all times.

Education and Training

The hospital has an active education programme and is one of Bristol University Medical Schools Academy’s with a newly built extension to the postgraduate centre. Medical students attend for modules of training year round in most years of their training.

There is an excellent library and the postgraduate centre staff are superb.

A full induction programme runs, with ALS/ILS and ALERT courses.

The CMT training programme occurs each Wedsnesday and is bleep free running from 9.30- 12.30. This is followed by the weekly grand round. There is a quarterly Divisional Audit meeting and audit is expected and supported for all trainees. The training programme covers the CMT curriculum and includes resuscitation updates.

Each trainee has an identifiable educational supervisor and uses the eportfolio. The college tutor oversees the training and appraisal programme. Trainees will sign an educational agreement and are expected to attend 70% of the training programme.

There is separate PACES training organised when appropriate and a very high pass rate is achieved.

Mock PACES exams are arranged when appropriate and the division has a number of experienced examiners to offer support.

Most specialities have additional teaching programmes that supplement the core training programme.


  • Cardiology: Full non interventional and interventional service with 2 catheter suites, 9 bedded CCU. ST will gain experience on CCU and cardiology ward, undertake cardiology procedures. 6 consultants
  • Respiratory: Full lung function lab and sleep studies. Support from 3 consultants and nurse specialists. Opportunity to develop practical skills and regular outpatient exposure
  • Endocrinology: Active department with interests in obesity, exercise as well as full range of endocrinology and diabetes. Opportunity to attend variety of outpatients. 4 Consultants
  • Gastroenterology: very busy ward with full range of in and out patient experience. Full endoscopy and ERCP service. Special expertise in nutrition with well developed nutrition team. 4 Consultants
  • Acute Medicine: busy MAU supported by lead consultant and ST3.Opportunity to develop acute medical skills across whole spectrum of acute medicine.
  • Elderly Care: large department covering wide range of acute and chronic pathology in elderly patients. Specific areas of interest- falls, osteoporosis, orthogeriatric liason, parkinsons, dementia. Opportunity to develop outpatient skills. Regular formal departmental teaching programme. 5 Consultants
  • Stroke Medicine: dedicated stroke ward with stroke team and coordinator. Rapid access stroke clinics run daily. Access to thrombolysis for acute stroke. 2 Consultants
  • Rheumatology: busy department with 2 consultants with large outpatient workload offering many training opportunities. Access to complex inpatients
  • Neurology: busy and enthusiastic team of 3 consultants , access to wide range of in and out patient training opportunities.


A busy but friendly hospital with keen enthusiastic staff, an excellent postgraduate centre with a well developed training programme that brings the best out of its trainees. A training rotation that is flexible and offers the opportunity to cover all the core specialities and can be individually adapted.


College Tutor- Dr Simon Cooper – Elderly Care

Associate College Tutor – Dr Rebecca Matthews

Please visit the Taunton and Somerset Hospital website for further information.