Public health

About the public health specialty programme

Public health training welcomes both medical and non-medical backgrounds and is regulated by the General Medical Council (GMC) and the UK Public Health Register (UKPHR). The Faculty of Public Health (FPH) sets and maintains the standards for the programme.

This five-year programme is based in North East England, offering varied experiences in rural, coastal, and urban communities. Trainees, known as Specialty Registrars (StRs), undertake diverse placements across the region to gain comprehensive experience.

In the first two years, StRs are usually based in one of the 11 local authority public health teams in the North East. Typically, they complete an MSc at Newcastle University in the first year unless they have a recent equivalent qualification. The second year includes a three-month placement with the UKHSA health protection team in Newcastle.

From the third year onwards, placements are tailored to training needs and career interests, including roles in academia, NHS Foundation Trusts, the regional Office for Health Improvement and Disparities (OHID), NHSE Screening and Immunisation, and the regional UKHSA team. Recent placements have included Transport North East and the North East Ambulance Service (NEAS), with opportunities for national projects and regional fellowships.

Year five placements reflect career preferences, providing senior experience in the desired field. The programme includes regular teaching and peer support sessions, an annual conference, leadership and management training, and media training. A regional revision course and mock exam are provided for the Diplomat (DFPH) exam, usually taken in the second year, with additional support for the Membership (MFPH) exam taken 6-12 months later.

Most placements offer a mix of home and office-based work, with IT equipment provided. There is an on-call commitment for health protection starting in the third year, with monthly and quarterly duties from home. The North East Public Health Registrar Network and the School of Public Health are committed to flexibility, support, and inclusivity, reflected in their equality, diversity, and inclusion action plan.

More information on public health, the types of consultant roles and specialty training can be found on the Faculty of Public Health’s website. What is Public Health? – FPH – Faculty of Public Health

Our training:

How many training places are there:

Usually 4-6 places per year

Training Locations

Local authorities:

  • Northumberland
  • North Tyneside
  • Newcastle
  • Gateshead
  • South Tyneside
  • Sunderland
  • County Durham
  • Darlington
  • Hartlepool
  • Stockton
  • South Tees (Middlesbrough and Redcar & Cleveland)

NHS foundation Trusts:

  • Northumbria Healthcare
  • North Tees FT
  • South Tyneside & Sunderland FT
  • NUTH
  • TEWV Mental Health Trust
  • CNTW Mental Health


Regional organisations:

  • OHID (Stella House, Newcastle, NE15 8NY)
  • UKHSA (Health Protection) (Civic Centre, Newcastle)


  • Newcastle University
  • NEAS
  • Transport North East
  • ICB
  • NHSE Screening and Immunisations Team
  • NHSE Specialised Commissioning Team

What our trainees says:

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