Foundation Doctor's 2023 Guide to Wales
Updated for 2023 Applicants
Wales Foundation School is part of Health Education and Improvement Wales (HEIW). It has just over 300 posts, of which 270 applicants chose it as their first preference. It's important to know that Wales runs an unpaired Foundation Programme, this essentially means that applicants will need to apply for their Foundation Year 2 posts separately during FY1. You can find more information about this on their official page here.
With the most towns & cities in Wales on or very near the coast, it’s difficult not to escape the sea. For the rural life, there is a mix of district general hospitals scattered across the north of Wales around Snowdonia National Park. For a keen hiker and explorer, there’s nothing better than climbing the peak of Snowdon, or you can cheat and take the train up to the top of the highest peak in Wales. In the South, the Brecon Beacons is a great national park with gorgeous walks.
The two tertiary hospitals in Wales are located in the south – University Hospital of Wales in Cardiff is a large 1000-bed hospital, with the 3rd largest A&E in the UK and a state-of-the-art transplant unit. Another teaching hospital is Morriston Hospital, in Swansea – it is the major trauma centre for the south of Wales and the centre for Burns & Plastic surgery in the country.
In the South of Wales, around Swansea, Newport & Cardiff, the transport links are superb with the M4 running from Swansea all the way into West London via Bristol. Trains run all across Wales, mainly going into Cardiff, and there’s a fast train from Cardiff to London that is just under 2 hours.
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Foundation School Statistics
2022 F1 Places: 405
2022 F1 Applicants: 210
2022 Competition Ratio: 0.52
2021 F1 Places: 358
2021 F1 Applicants: 214
2021 Competition Ratio: 0.6
Below is an interactive bar chart displaying the competition ratios, lowest entry scores, and the number of posts over the past 5 years.
Please note that the 2022 data for lowest entry score is not yet available, we will update this graph when it is.
How Does Wales Compare To Other Foundation Schools?
Check out our article "What are the most competitive foundations schools?" for a full breakdown.
Hospitals, Rotation Scores, CQC Ratings
In the chart below you'll find a list of hospitals attached to the Wales Foundation School, and an average of their Rotation Scores from Messly’s Training Navigator. Each rotation is given a score out of 100, which is based on a weighted average of ratings given by Foundation Trainees in the 2022 GMC NTS. The national average Rotation Score is 62 for reference.
Colours correspond to the latest CQC rating of that hospital.
Disclaimer: Please note that hospitals are unscored when there are insufficient responses by Foundation Trainees to the GMC’s NTS survey.
Need Help Ranking Your Foundation Programmes?
Rank your Foundation Programme rotations with confidence with Messly’s Training Navigator. See how rotations are rated by last year’s foundation trainees to make smarter decisions about where you’ll spend your Foundation Training.
You can use it to answer questions like:
👉 Which are the best-rated and worst-rated rotations in my Foundation School?
👉 How do the rotations compare for Workload, Learning and Satisfaction?
👉 Which is the best hospital for my favourite specialties?
👉 Within a hospital, which rotations are best-rated?
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