Nine interns have resigned from the HSE as of mid-October, a spokesperson has told the Medical Independent (MI). Four doctors left to take up internships elsewhere and five resigned for personal reasons. A number of medical graduates who deferred their final year exams in spring have asked the HSE to consider facilitating a second intake during the 2020/2021 intern year.
One graduate of a Dublin medical school, who has a wife and children, told MI he is currently looking for work. He is unable to enter employment as a doctor in Ireland until completing an internship. He said he deferred his final exams in spring due to personal circumstances and completed the repeat exams in August.
“I know there are intern posts available in hospitals right now because for different reasons people left their posts… I am sitting here with a degree done and available for work, but nobody is calling me,” he told MI. Last spring, medical schools brought forward their final year exams to ensure graduates could enter the workforce to assist in the Covid-19 pandemic response. Some students deferred the exams as they felt they were not prepared, or due to family or personal circumstances.
Commenting to MI last month, Prof Carmel Malone, Head of the Irish Medical Schools Council (IMSC), said it had advocated for a second intake of interns for many years. She said apart from academic issues, every year there are students who need to defer due to pregnancy, illness, or adverse family events. According to the HSE, candidates can apply for the next intake in July 2021.