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Spotlight on – the Directors of Medical Education


Spotlight on – the Directors of Medical Education

Within Scotland, each of the 14 territorial Health Boards has a Director of Medical Education (DME) who is employed by the Health Board and is responsible for strategic oversight of the delivery of high quality undergraduate and postgraduate education and training.

The DME ensures that the Health Board meets the regulatory standards required of a Local Education Provider (LEP) and that medical education is undertaken in a collaborative manner working with the Scotland Deanery and medical schools.

Within each Health Board, the DME is assisted by Associate / Deputy DMEs, Undergraduate leads and a dedicated medical education admin team – supporting all aspects of training and development.

The 2023 theme within NES is collaboration for improvement. The DMEs and the NES training quality workstream leads are the embodiment of this theme. By collaboration, supporting and developing innovative teaching and training, NES and the local education providers are training the workforce of the future.

DMEs will review areas of concern highlighted by either the National Trainees Survey (NTS), The Scottish Trainees Survey (STS) and any notification(s) of concern. All focus is to support and promote excellence in education.

The GMC quality assure training, the Scotland Deanery quality manage training and the Health Boards quality control medical education and training.

Where clinical units are failing to reach the GMC standards of Promoting Excellence in Medical Education, the DME and their team will work with the local trainers and NES to improve the quality of training.

As training representatives for the Health Board, the DME reach and accountability is far and wide.

Directors of medical education are involved in all aspects of the continuum of training and education from medical students, Foundation Trainees, Clinical Fellows to Core and Higher Specialty trainees and Trainers.

Below is a flavour of what DMEs are accountable for and involved in:

  • Postgraduate training at all levels
  • Undergraduate training
  • ACT (Additional Cost of Training) funding for undergraduate activity
  • Trainee and student wellbeing
    • Civility saves lives
    • Peer support
    • Mentoring
  • Clinical Fellows – whilst these doctors are not currently in training, they support training, and many clinical fellows will return to training
  • Recognition of Training (RoT)
    • Trainer training and development
  • Simulation training
    • Undergraduates
    • Postgraduates
    • Interprofessional learning
  • Chief residents
  • International Medical Graduates
    • Softer Landing
    • Simulation
  • Widening access to medicine programmes
  • Refugee doctor programme

If there is any aspect of your training or employment within your current placement which you would like to discuss with your local DME please get in touch.



In collaboration with NES, the Scottish DMEs are working to ensure that Scotland is a great place to train and work.

Spotlight on – the Directors of Medical Education