TWO trainee doctors who went to a Dorchester school have returned to the area to work at the county hospital.

Dr Anna Hope and Dr Jessica Davey have joined Dorset County Hospital as foundation doctors and aim to ‘give something back to the community’.

Dr Hope is from Osmington and attended sixth form at Thomas Hardye School, where her passion for science developed. She then attended Newcastle University, where she completed her medical training, and is the first member of her family to attend university.

She said: “I enjoyed my time at Newcastle, and it was great to work with a different patient demographic, and to understand the challenges of delivering healthcare in areas of social deprivation. From my experiences of hospitals in the North East, it seemed that smaller hospitals tended to be friendlier – in the larger hospitals sometimes the senior staff were less approachable. This was one of the reasons I wanted to come back to DCH; I wanted to work in a smaller, friendly hospital with a real sense of community.”

Dr Davey attended Wey Valley School and also Hardye’s sixth form. She is the first generation of her immediate family to go to university and attended the Peninsula Medical School, undertaking training in Exeter, Plymouth and Cornwall.

She said: “Before I went to sixth form I wasn’t really aware of medicine as a career, it was only talking to friends whose parents were medics that I understood that becoming a doctor was a realistic career choice for me.”

She added: “I had heard very good things about DCH – I was keen to work in a small hospital, and when I heard the feedback from other doctors who had trained at DCH, I knew it was where I wanted to undertake my training”.

The pair will now complete two years of training at the hospital, which will involve a series of assessments under the supervision of Dr Adeel Ghaffar, Consultant Physician and Foundation Programme Director, and Audrey Ryan, Associate Director of Medical Education.

Dorset County Hospital currently has 55 foundation doctors, 30 in their first foundation year and 25 in their second foundation year.

Dr Adeel Ghaffar, Consultant Physician at Dorset County Hospital and Foundation Programme Director said: “We are delighted to have such a wonderful, dedicated group of foundation doctors. I hope that stories such as Anna’s and Jessica’s will encourage other local young people to consider a career in medicine, and encourage other doctors in training who grew-up in Dorchester to return to the area after attending university.”

Both Dr Hope and Dr Davey say they have no fixed career plans and want to make the most of the training opportunities available to them over the next two years at DCH.