Geriatric medicine is a hospital-based speciality that involves caring for elderly patients. In addition to managing patients who present with acute illnesses, geriatricians work in multidisciplinary teams to manage any additional requirements that patients may have for social support.
The Royal Society of Medicine offers a range of events for different medical specialties, including Geriatric Medicine – see a full list on our Events page>>
Entry Route into Geriatric Training
Applicants must have completed the two-year foundation programme before they can apply for a core training programme. Core training consists of either:
These programmes generally involve completing four to six medical placements and trainees must take part in acute on-call work.
Job Progression as a Geriatrician
Higher speciality geriatric training starts at ST3 and applicants should have the full membership of the Royal College of Physicians before applying for ST3 posts. Geriatric trainees can obtain a dual accreditation in Geriatric Medicine and General Internal Medicine (GIM) which takes at least five years. Trainees who complete the single CCT in Geriatrics can complete training in four years. It is also possible to complete a one-year training programme in subspecialities such as stroke medicine, Parkinson’s disease, falls and fracture prevention, diabetes and cardiovascular disease.
Other training programmes include academic clinical fellowships during core training, which enable trainees to complete a PhD – leading on to a lecturing role combining clinical and academic work. There are many opportunities to become involved in teaching and to take part in research.
Competition for Geriatric Training Posts
In 2017, the competition ratio at ST3 was 1.4 in the first round, with 214 applications for 150 NTN posts and 2 LAT posts, with 49% of applicants applying for Geriatric Medicine only. In the second round, the competition ratio was 0.7, with 42 applications for 57 NTN posts and 3 LAT posts.
In December 2017, there were
- 1,299 consultants,
- 28 associate specialists,
- 180 speciality doctors,
- 8 staff grades,
- 972 speciality registrars,
- 455 core trainees,
- 396 F2 trainees, and
- 610 F1 trainees.
Salaries in Geriatrics
The starting salary for junior doctors in England ranges from £26,614 to £46,208, and from £37,923 to £87,521 for speciality doctors. Consultants can expect to earn between £76,761 and £103,490. There are additional supplements for on-call work, antisocial hours, and other commitments and situations. For additional information, please check our page on pay scales.
A Day in the Life of a Geriatrician
Geriatric Medicine is mainly a hospital-based speciality, although some geriatricians work in day hospitals or residential homes. Geriatricians generally conduct ward rounds for an average of four programmed activities per week, outpatient clinics for two PAs per week, and acute on-call work for one PA a week. Some may undertake specialist interest work for an additional one PA a week. A typical on-call rota would include one-in-10 acute on-calls. Some geriatricians work out-of-hours in clinical decision or medical assessment units.