The aim of the study was to elicit the views of senior house officers in psychiatry across London regarding the factors that influence their decision whether to pursue a career in child and adolescent psychiatry. Postal questionnaires were sent to a random sample of all senior house officers on London psychiatry training schemes.
Of the respondents who recalled being taught child psychiatry at medical school, 91% found it interesting and 73% found it useful. Of those who recalled having such teaching during psychiatric training, 90% found it interesting and 85% found it useful. However, this had no significant impact upon subsequent career choice. Experience of working as a senior house officer in child psychiatry did influence future career intentions. Trainees who identified such placements as providing good clinical experience or job satisfaction were significantly more likely to consider the specialty for a future career.
Consultants and managers should create and maintain senior house officer posts that will encourage trainees to perceive the specialty as a future career.
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