University of Cumbria and Imperial College London to open Cumbria's first medical school in 2025

Credit: University of Cumbria

The University of Cumbria and Imperial College London are working together to launch Cumbria's first graduate entry medical school.

The Carlisle-based school, which aims to enrol its first students in autumn 2025, will train new doctors for Cumbria and North West England.

This partnership aims to unite Imperial College's world-renowned medical school with the University of Cumbria’s expertise in the education of nurses, midwives and allied health professionals to improve the region’s access to world-class clinical care.

Midwifery students training Credit: University of Cumbria

Health and education leaders say the partnership is the result of a shared vision to educate more medical professionals to serve their local communities in regions with the greatest need. The school will be situated in an area of England where the recruitment and retention of medical staff remains a significant challenge.

Health and Social Care Secretary Sajid Javid said: "This partnership between Imperial College London and University of Cumbria will help level up opportunity and train more doctors in the North West.

"The new medical school supports our ambition to grow the workforce and already there are 1,500 more medical school places – a 25% increase – and five new medical schools across the country since 2017.

"Our doctors have worked tirelessly throughout the pandemic to care for us and our loved ones, and it is this dedication that is inspiring the next generation.”

Professor Brian Webster-Henderson, Deputy Vice Chancellor (Health, Environment & Innovation), the University of Cumbria’s strategic lead on the initiative said: "This significant partnership will enable us to expand our diverse health care portfolio to include medicine for the first time, and develop joint research programmes to address many of the county’s unique challenges.

Dr Louis Koiza wears the Microsoft HoloLens to deliver live clinical teaching on site at St Mary’s Hospital in London Credit: Imperial College London / Thomas Angus

"The new school’s location will have the dual benefit of opening up more opportunities to study medicine in the North West, and provide a steady stream of trained doctors for the region.”

Mr Martin Lupton, Vice Dean (Education), at Imperial’s Faculty of Medicine said: “Nearly 2,500 years ago Plato said that ‘The measure of a man is what they do with power’. The measure of a great UK institution is the positive impact it has on our national and international community.

"In order to help redress imbalances in social deprivation, health inequality and medical staff shortages across the country, the University of Cumbria and Imperial College London have committed to co-create a new medical school in Carlisle. Our two institutions are complementary, bringing their own unique set of attributes to the collaboration, and share a common mission to improve the health and well-being of the people of Cumbria and the North West through education and research.”