Background SAS doctors (specialist, associate specialist, and specialty doctors) are a diverse group of medical professionals (General Medical Council. Survey of specialty and associate specialist and locally employed doctors.). They form a valuable core of the workforce and are essential for a functioning NHS. The SAS charter states there should be opportunities for development for career progression which includes working across different settings (SAS Charter. Joint publication with NHS England, Academy of Royal Medical Colleges and the British Medical Association, 2014). We worked to improve development opportunities for three SAS doctors in the Liverpool region.
Aims To describe the experience of three senior specialty doctors undertaking a job rotation in the North-West of England.
Methods The SAS doctors liaised with a local NHS teaching hospital and two hospices in the region to discuss how a job rotation would enrich their experiences across palliative care services. Honorary contracts were drawn up with the input from medical directors across the different settings, with a plan to rotate across these settings over a six-month period. Each doctor devised a proposed job plan and shared this with their rotating team. Each doctor had a clinical supervisor for each placement, but maintained their base educational supervisor.
Results The six-month rotation has proven to be a positive experience for the SAS doctors involved. They have reported being able to meet career development needs by experiencing palliative care in different settings. Furthermore, the hosting sites have reported that the rotation has been beneficial to the wider multidisciplinary team as there has been evidence of reciprocal learning.
Conclusions We hope this paves the path for development of SAS doctors in the future and can form a blueprint for SAS doctors. SAS doctors have training needs and investment in their careers, enrichment of their experience in palliative care serves to ultimately improve patient experience and quality of care.
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