All of us in our community and beyond are doing our best to absorb and respond to a rapidly-evolving situation with the Covid-19 outbreak. We recognise your anxiety and your wish for clarity and are committed to offering you answers as soon as we can.
Updated FAQS and guidance
We continue to update the online Covid-19 information hub with the latest information and have made a number of updates in the information for students today.
Update on clinical placements
All universities offering clinical courses are facing the same challenge of how to ensure continued student access to clinical placements. And each university also has to accommodate local factors in making decisions.
Your programme teams have been working hard to consider how to approach this at St George’s, and we wanted to share the following update:
- Clinical placements remain suspended in these unprecedented times while clinical services are so stretched and all the signs are that they will continue to be so for at least some weeks. We are all also currently advised to reduce non-essential face to face interactions.
- Alternatives to clinical placements are being developed by programme teams to help students to graduate and progress. Your course teams will be in touch as new materials are made available. Please be patient and wait for further course-specific communications.
- The suspension will be reviewed after Easter (Monday 20 April 2020) in the first instance, and on a rolling basis thereafter (please note the specific advice for international students below).
- Should the national situation change significantly after that, clinical placements may be possible for selected cohorts and providers. Decisions will be informed by student and patient safety, priorities to enable students to progress and graduate, and local service demands.
- Students will be given at least two weeks’ notice of a placement opportunity. This may vary between courses and cohorts depending on these factors.
Please note, the Physician Associate Studies programme team is continuing to work on their approach to clinical placements and will be in touch with specific information for their students soon.
Guidance for international students
St George’s fully understands that those international students who want to return home, should do so, given the uncertainties of the coronavirus pandemic.
If you do decide to leave the UK, please be assured we will be as flexible as possible in supporting any students in relation to clinical placements, assessments, and progression. For any students impacted by the ongoing travel restrictions, we are confident that there will be solutions when they are able to return to on-site activities.
Thank you, again, for your patience and understanding. We will continue to keep in touch regularly as we have more to update. I am so proud of how our community is working together in these challenging times.
Professor Jenny Higham