rural but central...

Why South Worcester VTS?

Reasons for Joining South Worcester VTS

We asked existing Course Members and Course Organisers the question: Why should you come to Worcester?

The VTS Course Members' reasons:

  • Relaxed and friendly atmosphere
  • Good social life amongst VTS trainees
  • Great bunch of people on VTS
  • Educational, in a refreshing way
  • Variety of topics and learning & teaching styles
  • SHO and Registrar groups work together and separately
  • Good exam preparation
  • High academic standards yet relaxed friendly atmosphere
  • Responsive to needs, willing to change focus at request of trainees
  • Wide range of skills taught, not just clinical

The Course Organisers' reasons:

  • Worcester is a great place to live and work - a lovely location, with good quality of life for the Registrars
  • It is a young city with good social and sporting facilities
  • The VTS members are always good: high quality doctors, know how to have fun
  • Excellent training practices, rural and urban - enthusiastic and committed Trainers, who enjoying teaching their Registrars
  • Top quality half-day release course led by well-motivated and experienced Course Organisers
  • Good teaching from hospital Consultants
  • Excellent job prospects in the locality both full- and part-time in this delightful part of England
  • The course equips you with all the skills you need to practice with confidence as a young Principle
  • Genuine warmth, trust and openness within the VTS group
  • Good social events

About Us

The South Worcestershire scheme is one of the West Midland Region's leading Vocational Training Schemes. As well as being of a very high academic standard, it has a reputation for innovation and fun.

Worcester VTS Philosophy

 To enable qualified doctors to enjoy General Practice by:

  • Developing clinical and communication skills that reflect a personal approach to patients
  • Being sensitive to the social, political and ethical context within which medicine is practised
  • Understanding the role of the GP in the primary health care team and in society
  • Using the hospital specialities to gain expertise that will be relevant to general practice
  • Knowing how to look after themselves and their own needs
  • Being able to work in teams - understanding their managerial and personal functions

While at the same time:

  • Having fun
  • Taking responsibility for their own personal development and learning
  • Being intellectually challenged and academically stimulated

Course Details

Worcester Vocational Training Scheme runs for three terms of eight weeks on Thursday afternoons. The Terms start in September January and in May. 

The people on the course determine the format and content of the Thursday afternoons. Teaching is directed at General Practice but, for people doing hospital jobs, cases that they have been dealing with on the wards are used as teaching material. Each term has a theme which determines some of the content and this changes each term through the broad areas of interest of General Practice namely: problem solving, communication (listening and explaining), the practice organisation, ethical and moral issues and the doctor's own personal development.

By changing the theme of each term over three years we cover all the important aspects of General Practice and repetition is kept to a minimum.
We believe that General Practice is a Speciality in its own right, and part of being a good GP is having a professional qualification. It is now compulsory to do the exam, and preparation for the nMRCGP is an integral part of our course. 

Social events are important throughout the three years. The course participants determine the nature of these and in the past they have shown remarkable diversity. There is a good supportive atmosphere on the course and anyone joining can expect that other members and the Course Organisers will be helping them develop the necessary skills to become effective GPs.

VTS Course Content

  • Clinical skills based on problem solving
  • Organisational aspects of General Practice
  • Communication
  • Professional values
  • The Doctor as a person

Clinical skills based on problem solving

  • Managing everyday diseases and emergencies by making sound clinical and managerial decisions
  • Thinking clearly - analysing information and evidence and coming to considered judgments
  • Identifying options and choosing between those options
  • Learning to be flexible and to cope with uncertainty
  • Organisational aspects of General Practice

Organisational aspects of General Practice

  • Understanding current GP issues
  • Understanding the role of other primary health care team members
  • Management and business of GP - including PCTs
  • How social conditions and cultural factors affect a patient's disease and how it presents
  • Applying preventative measures, health education and health promotion


  • Communicating well: verbally and non-verbally
  • Expressing ideas with lucidity and clarity
  • Showing compassion, empathy and sensitivity
  • Understanding and using consultation models

Professional Values

  • Being aware of the importance of our own values and attitudes
  • Basing clinical behaviour on rational evidence, forming opinions that are not prejudiced
  • Recognising the patient's autonomy and the significance of patient-centred and doctor-centred working styles
  • Expressing views which are not dogmatic or arrogant
  • Tolerating the views of others: patients, their relatives, and colleagues
  • Considering moral, ethical and medico-legal issues

The Doctor as a person

  • Learning to self-appraise
  • Knowing your limitations and performing safely, knowing when it is necessary to seek help or refer
  • Being receptive to new ideas and approaches; understanding change and how to manage it
  • Staying positive about your work, surviving personal and professional stress by using strategies to prevent burn out

Developing people for health and healthcare