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At the annual NIHR School for Primary Care Research (SPCR) Trainees meeting, training leads are frequently asked about mentoring opportunities for primary healthcare scientists. The majority of our trainees are not medically qualified and as such cannot access mentoring opportunities provided by the Academy of Medical Sciences (AMS) or local Vocational Training Schemes (VTS). Recognising the need to provide support and mentorship to primary healthcare scientists, the Society for Academic Primary Care (SAPC) developed a scheme in 2013 to support early / mid stage researchers (https://sapc.ac.uk/article/mentorship-programme).

Rather than establishing a separate mentoring scheme to support primary healthcare scientists working within the SPCR, we are working alongside the SAPC to provide additional capacity for SPCR trainees. This builds on the success of the SAPC scheme and provides independent mentoring opportunities within the School.

Clinically qualified trainees are able to access the Academy of Clinical Sciences mentoring scheme.

Information from the available SPCR mentors is available in Mentor biographies

Trainees

If you are interested in applying, please submit a CV and statement outlining your area of research to Georgina Fletcher.

Mentors

If you would like to become a mentor for the SPCR please submit a short CV and a short statement outlining your suitability for the role to Georgina Fletcher.

sapc Phocus group

In 2012, the Society for Academic Primary Care (SAPC) started work to understand and address the career development needs of members who don't come from a medically qualified background. The result was the establishment of the Primary Health Care Scientists (PHoCuS) group. 

Former SPCR trainee from the University of Southampton, Lily Lai, spoke about the value of group meetings: "I didn’t know there were quite so many ‘non-GPs’ until I came to one of the Primary Healthcare Scientists (PHoCuS) group meetings back in 2012... The PHoCuS group was set up in 2011 as a way of offering a single support scheme to this multidisciplinary group within SAPC.  Since this time, the group has grown considerably – initially hosting one annual meeting at the national SAPC conference to now organising a range of activities which are led by PHoCuS members.  These activities are designed to promote interdisciplinary engagement, to offer further opportunities for collaboration and are designed to be as inclusive as possible to meet the needs of this varied group."