Category Archive Industry guidance

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Training in Paediatrics – the basics and new developments

Paediatrics continues to offer varied career opportunities including subspecialisation in level 3 training (ST6-8) in 17 accredited subspecialties as well as Community Paediatrics and neonatology (subspecialty training). In addition, doctors with a predominant general Paediatric interest can develop special expertise by undertaking “SPIN” modules during training or in career grade posts. There are 16 such modules (SPIN modules).

Paediatrics had a new ePortfolio last year, “Kaizen”. After some teething problems, this is a helpful electronic resource which continues to be developed and new features added. It is available for use by nurse practitioners, trust grade and staff and associate specialist posts but of course there is a fee for doing so (Register for RCPCH ePortfolio).

The RCPCH offers very helpful advice for doctors who wish to apply via the CESR route to the specialist register and in my mind no one should apply without seeking RCPCH advice first as chances of success are greatly increased (RCPCH CESR).

In 2018, Paediatrics will have a new training curriculum which will be outcome based rather than a competency based curriculum (RCPCH new curriculum). After having a number of new assessments introduced in August 2016, there are no planned changes in the assessment strategy and of note is that there is no minimum number of mini-CEXs or CbDs with a strong emphasis on the formative nature of assessments. In the future, RCPCH will have entrustable professional activities (EPAs) which are currently in development.

As all Paediatricians hopefully like children, there are a number of training rota gaps due to parental leave at both junior (ST1-3) and senior (ST6-8) training levels for which locums are frequently needed or for which trust grade posts are established. It is important to be up to date with paediatric life support courses (NLS and either EPALS or APLS) and level 3 safeguarding.

 

Author: Dr Helen Goodyear, Consultant Paediatrician and Associate Postgraduate Dean, Health Education England (West Midlands)

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Charlotte Alexander, Admin & Clerical Worker, wins September’s Bank Worker of the Month Award!

We are delighted to announce that Charlotte Alexander, Admin & Clerical Worker at Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust, was one of September’s Bank Worker Of The Month winners. We spoke to Charley following her award, to find out more about her and her working life.

How did you get into your current area of work?

My mum is a sexual health nurse and when she spoke about her job it really interested me. I wanted to become a part of such a lovely team and help care for people and I felt this was the best way to do it.

What does your typical day at work consist of?

I do a lot of admin work, appointment booking and talking to patients face-to-face.

What do you love most about your job?

I love being able to help young women and men in need and putting their minds at ease. I also love being able to interact with people.

How would you colleagues describe you in three words?

I think they would describe me as bubbly, smiley and committed.

What’s been your proudest achievement at work to date?

Helping to archive the notes at Moor St clinic and making a mass move to help the staff in less than a day. We didn’t think it could be done and thought the clinic would need to close, but we managed to do it!

What’s the most challenging part of your role?

Trying to make sure all patients are left satisfied and trying to archive as many notes as possible.

What’s the best thing about working for NHSP?

It’s so flexible and I can chose shifts that suit me. The NHSP onsite team are super lovely and supportive.

What do you usually do on your days off?

I love to relax with my friends, bake and play hockey!

The Bank Worker Of The Month award acknowledges Bank Workers who have gone above and beyond what is required in their everyday duties.
There is an award for four categories; Care Support Worker/Healthcare Assistant, Specialist Nurse, Registered Nurse and Admin & Clerical.
To win this award, the workers must fulfil the following criteria:
• Achieve ‘5 – Excellent’ on all five of the sections of the ‘Performance Evaluation System’, which is completed by the Ward Manager at the end of each shift.
• Not cancel any shifts for that month.
• Fill the highest number of shifts in the month for which they are being considered for.
A huge well done to Charley and all the other winners for September! Thank you to all of our workers for ensuring that patients receive the best care possible, and for being great ambassadors for NHS Professionals.

 

 

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Get the flu jab, get flu safe!

As frontline healthcare staff we would like to help you protect your patients, family, friends and colleagues by getting an annual flu vaccination. As you are a frontline healthcare worker your GP may provide you with a free flu vaccination. Some of our client Trusts may also provide you with a free flu vaccination as part of their vaccination programme for their permanent staff. Alternatively, at a small cost, you can also get your flu jab from supermarkets or your local pharmacy.

Flu viruses are constantly changing and every year different flu viruses can spread. Getting vaccinated against the flu every season protects against the main influenza viruses that research indicates will cause the most illness in that season.

Influenza (flu) is a contagious respiratory disease that can result in time off work and in certain individuals, may lead to serious complications. Anyone can get the flu and vaccination is the single best way to protect against it. Even healthy children and adults can get very sick from the flu and spread it to family and friends.

So remember to get your vaccination as soon as possible and get flu safe!

For more information, please visit the NHS Website.

 

 

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Miriam shares her thoughts on the Springboard programme

NHS Professionals’ established Springboard provides an opportunity for those without formal care experience to become a flexible support worker. You embark on an extensive training and provision programme and NHSP guarantees that those who pass the programme will acquire all 15 standards of the National Care Certificate.

Miriam King has recently completed the Springboard programme at Southern Health NHS Foundation Trust. She is now working as a permanent member of staff at the Ark Royal ward, but will continue to stay with NHSP and work shifts on other wards to build on her skills and experience.

We spoke with Miriam to find out about her experiences with the Springboard programme.

Can you tell us a little bit about why you chose to join our programme and become a flexible support worker with NHSP?

I first heard about the development programme from a parent who had done the programme two years ago. At the time, I was working as an early year’s practitioner and was very interested in working in a hospital, but I knew that I needed to have a qualification in order to find a suitable position.

The NHSP development programme was ideal because it’s a six-month structured programme, which includes both classroom training and working in a ward as a health care assistant. Therefore, I could learn and gain valuable experience all at the same time. I was offered support throughout the programme from both NHSP and my team members. I felt this was a lot better than just going to a ward and starting something totally new without much support.

What’s the best thing about working for NHSP?

The flexibility is excellent as it means you can choose which type of ward you want to work on. You can also choose which hospital you want and what hours suit you best. Having the support of NHSP via the phone or visiting my local Trust Liaison Coordinator to answer any questions or concerns was very reassuring. I have also found that NHSP agency staff are more respected than other agency staff and are usually trained better.

What advice can you give to other people in a similar situation to you who are looking to join the programme?

If anyone wants to work in a hospital and gain their healthcare certificate, I would highly recommend this programme; I have already recommended it to a few people! I would advise you to check all emails and correspondence, and to get all the correct information sent off as soon as possible to speed up the process. Also, chase things up if you haven’t heard anything.

What do you think about the training and supervision programme NHS Professionals provides?

With regards to the classroom training, we had an excellent trainer who made it fun and interesting. Some topics were a bit daunting if you’ve never worked in healthcare, but we all left with enough confidence to start our six-month training.

It was a challenge being placed on an elderly rehabilitation ward as I have spent my whole life caring and working with children and after one week of shadowing a healthcare support worker I was working on my own. The supervision programme was ok, although I didn’t see very much of my co-ordinator unless there were any problems. I also found it very hard to get support to complete the 15 standards required to be awarded the Healthcare certificate, and had to look a lot of information up on the internet.

NHS Professionals are the only company where you have to sit an exam to progress to interview stage and then a final exam to complete the programme, which I think is a very professional way to gain the healthcare certificate. I’d like to add that working for six months on a ward allows you to learn and develop your skills safely and professionally, and with support. You also get the chance to build good relationships with the team and your coordinator. I was given the opportunity to gain a secure placement, which may not have been possible had I not pursued the Springboard programme through NHSP.

NHS Professionals wishes to thank Miriam for taking the time out to tell us about her experiences with the Springboard programme. If this programme sounds of interest to you, please visit www.jobs.nhs.uk and search ‘Trainee Care Support Worker’, where you will find the latest adverts for programmes currently available.

For further information, please email the Workforce Programmes Team at csw@nhsprofessionals.nhs.uk.

 

 

 

 

 

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Louisa Bardsley, Specialist Nurse, wins August’s Bank Worker of the Month Award!

incentive-photo-louisa-bardsley.jpgWe are delighted to announce that Louisa Bardsley was one of August’s Bank Worker Of The Month winners, a Specialist Nurse at Tameside & Glossop Integrated Care NHS Foundation Trust. We spoke to Louisa following her award, to find out more about her and her working life.

How did you get into your current area of work?

I have worked in the Emergency Department since qualifying.

What does your typical day at work consist of?

No two days are the same, working in A&E there is lots of variety and no ‘typical’ day.

What do you love most about your job?

The variety of medical conditions; I learn something new every day.

How would your colleagues describe you in three words?

Caring, Hardworking and Reliable.

What’s been your proudest achievement at work to date?

This Award!

What’s the most challenging part of your role?

Being unable to spend more time with my patients due to the demand in A&E.

What’s the best thing about working for NHSP?

The flexibility.

What do you usually do on your days off?

See friends, catch up on life’s necessities and sleep!

The Bank Worker Of The Month award acknowledges Bank Workers who have gone above and beyond what is required in their everyday duties.
There is an award for four categories; Care Support Worker/Healthcare Assistant, Specialist Nurse, Registered Nurse and Admin & Clerical.
To win this award, the workers must fulfil the following criteria:
• Achieve ‘5 – Excellent’ on all five of the sections of the ‘Performance Evaluation System’, which is completed by the Ward Manager at the end of each shift.
• Not cancel any shifts for that month.
• Fill the highest number of shifts in the month for which they are being considered for.
A huge well done to Louise and all the other winners for August! Thank you to all of our workers for ensuring that patients receive the best care possible, and for being great ambassadors for NHS Professionals.

 

 

 

 

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Recruiting the right locum for the right role, at the right Trust

As mentioned in my last blog, locum doctors deployed on a flexible basis by Trusts are a widely varied group of professionals working within different specialities, with varying levels of experience and across many geographical locations. So when a Trust is looking for locums, how can they be sure they select the right person for the role?

With locums moving from job to job and agency to agency up to date information about individuals is often difficult to access. So what are the current guidelines for recruitment – and how the process can be made more effective and efficient?

The NHS Guidelines

In August 2013 NHS Employers issued a Code of Practice for the appointment and employment of NHS locum doctors. It applies to all doctors including directly employed locum doctors, agency locum doctors and locums working through their own limited companies.

Principles for appointment and employment of locum doctors

All locums should:

  • Meet the entry criteria for the post
  • Be properly experienced and qualified for the role
  • Have satisfactory communication skills
  • Not be appointed if currently subject to an investigation or if there are concerns
  • Not be engaged until all necessary employment checks have been conducted satisfactorily
  • Have 6 months NHS experience within the last 2 years

Employers should:

  • Carry out NHS Employment checks
  • Check GMC registration/licence status and identify any restrictions
  • Check appraisal and revalidation status and ideally identify the name of the doctor’s RO

Employment Check Standards required by the NHS cover: identity, right to work, professional registration and qualification, employment history and references disclosure and barring Service (DBS) and occupational health.

Framework agencies are contractually obliged to meet these standards, and their compliance is audited on an ongoing basis. ‘Off framework’ agencies are not covered by this audit.

The big questions are how well are these standards and checks currently being applied, and do they go far enough? Do they ensure that the right locum is appointed for each role, and that – as the headline of this blog questions, are they fit for purpose?

Our belief at Doctors Direct is that it may be far too easy to ‘sign a slip’ and appoint a locum doctor as long as the basic checks are met. Given the pressure on Trusts to deliver services, how does the Trust reassure itself that the locum has the appropriate compliance and, more importantly, competencies to fill a position? If the wrong locum is placed in the wrong role there could be considerable implications for, and potential impact on, patient care and safety.

That’s one of the reasons why we have established Medical Advisory Group (MAG) – a body made up of nine senior consultant clinicians from across England, covering all major specialities, advising Doctors Direct on clinical governance matters as they impact our locum doctor service. It’s a structure which doesn’t exist anywhere else and brings significant benefits for our Trusts and locums. For a doctor to be presented to a Medical Advisor for approval they will have completed all the NHS Employment Check standards including appropriate references.

 

The role of the Medical Advisory Group in locum recruitment:

  • All applicants have their recruitment documents reviewed by one of the Medical Advisors with an aimed 24 hour turn around
  • Medical Advisors make the ultimate decision about the grade and speciality the applicant doctor can work
  • They can reject an applicant if they feel the applicant is not qualified for the role that they have applied for
  • The Medical Advisor reviews and upgrades locums on evidence of work experience, training updates and references where this is appropriate

The benefits of this system:

Through the MAG, Doctors Direct are able to assure itself that our locum doctors are working at the right grade in the right speciality – reassuring the Trusts that they are making the right appointments. It is not possible for anyone other than a MAG, or in exceptional circumstances the Medical Director, to approve a role for a locum doctor. The approval process ensures that locums have the right skills to match the role, and Trusts have the reassurance of knowing all checks have been thoroughly reviewed and signed off by a senior clinician.

Locum doctors also have the opportunity for promotion to higher grades following MAG review of work experience, backed by evidence of competency training and references for the proposed higher grade. In this way locums have the opportunity to work in a wider range of roles and Trusts have the reassurance that locum progress through the grades is being monitored by senior clinicians.

I believe that with the MAG, Doctors Direct has developed a support network of senior clinicians to support the clinical governance agenda of our locum doctors service which benefits both the locum doctors and the Trusts.

In my next blog I would like to consider pathways by which we can reach out to, engage with and support the cohort of doctors who may want to return to clinical practice but for whom this has proved difficult. I am talking here of doctors who have been out of clinical practice for some time for a whole variety of reasons and who may feel deskilled, out of touch and no longer up to date. 

Helen McGill, ‎Medical Director and Responsible Officer at NHS Professionals