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Precise knowledge about production of doctors is important for planning, but existing data make satisfactory analysis difficult.
Intake, output, and drop out data
Intake--Two sets of figures are available: university returns "at the beginning of the autumn term" and a December census for the University Statistical Record of intake "during the year ended 31 July." Comparison shows differences of 9-56 in the annual intake numbers for 1990-3 over all UK medical schools.
Output--Figures from the University Statistical Record--the medical return--give numbers gaining a first registerable medical qualification "during the year ended 31 July." Other tables, compiled by the Higher Education Funding Council for England, show students "leaving due to success," and give "revised calculation of % drop out" year by year during the undergraduate course. The methods of calculation are difficult to understand, but these tables, made available to individual medical schools, seem to be …