FAQs

  1. Am I eligible to access SuppoRTT?
  2. Who should I inform if I am planning or unexpectedly have an extended period time out of my programme?
  3. When should I begin planning time away from training?
  4. What is the role of the supervisor in SuppoRTT?
  5. Why are there so many forms?
  6. Do I need to read the Supported Return to Training (SuppoRTT) Guidance?
  7. Will HEE contact me while I am absent?
  8. Who is my SuppoRTT Champion?
  9. What are KIT, SPLIT and SRTT days?
  10. What additional funding may be available to me?
  11. Can I get funding towards childcare costs for trainee attendance at SPLIT/KIT/SRTT days?
  12. I am interested in working LTFT, what should I do?
  13. What if my plan of return includes an Occupational Health Report?
  14. What is enhanced supervision?
  15. When will my next ARCP take place?
  16. What should I do if my supervisor isn’t supporting me?

 

1. Am I eligible to access SuppoRTT?

Access to SuppoRTT in the North West is available to all trainees in the region who are planning to take, or already on, an approved period of time out of training for one or more of the following reasons:

  • Parental leave exceeding 3 months
  • Out of Programme (OOP)
  • Global Health Fellowship
  • Sick leave of 3 months or more
  • Carer’s leave for 3 months or more
  • Doctors who have been out of training for more than 3 months and have accepted a North West training post (this includes if you have had a break following F2 and are re-entering training)

2.  Who should I inform if I am planning or unexpectedly have an extended period time out of my programme?

Your TPD: The TPD is responsible for coordinating your training programme and ensuring that trainees are placed in the right department at the right time with the right support.

The details of your TPD can be found on HEE NW website here.

Lead Employer: As an employee you are contractually obliged to inform your employer if you are taking a leave of absence. Your employer is also responsible for your welfare and making sure that you are paid correctly. You can email them on Lead.employer@sthk.nhs.uk. Put your specialty in the subject header and your email will be picked up by the correct team. If you are planning parental leave, the lead employer has a useful toolkit on their website with lots of information.

Programme Support: HEE are your educational training provider and will need to maintain up-to-date records which have an impact on your ARCPs and CCT date.  Deanery Support within each specialty school can be found on the HEE NW website here.

Host Organisation: You should let the rota coordinator and medical staffing at your workplace know as soon as possible if you are taking time out of training as they will need to anticipate any rota gaps.

SuppoRTT Champions: These individuals throughout trusts and schools in the region are there to offer advice and assistance in making your return to work as positive as possible. School champions are involved with arranging specialty specific return to work activities within many specialties in the region. Trust champions can offer advice and assistance to trainees returning to their Trust and communicate your return to training plan with the necessary clinical and administrative staff. You should contact your SuppoRTT champion whenever you need advice or assistance. A full list of current champions can be found here.

3. When should I begin planning time away from training?

You should begin planning your time away from training with your TPD / FPD / Supervisor at the earliest opportunity and no later than 3 months in advance of you intended leave date, where possible. We understand that this is not always possible if the leave is unexpected, but we do encourage the Pre-Absence meeting to still take place at the earliest possible opportunity to provide support to the trainee.

4.  What is the role of the supervisor in SuppoRTT?

Each trainee will have different requirements but within your training programme there should be a supervisor who is responsible for overseeing your smooth transition out of and back into training. Depending on your circumstances and training scheme, this could be your ES (Educational Supervisor), TPD (Training Programme Director), FPD (Foundation Programme Director) or College Tutor. We do not specify who as we realise that each specialty school is different. Usually the Educational Supervisor can conduct your SuppoRTT planning meetings but your TPD or FPD should be able to advise you further if unsure.

Your TPD / FPD / Supervisor should meet with you at three points in your SuppoRTT timeline:

Pre- Absence:

  • Approximately 8-12 weeks prior to your exit from the training programme whenever possible
  • Lay out plans for your return
  • Set a tentative return date
  • Share information about courses and ways of keeping up to date while away
  • Ensure up-to-date contact details are available to keep in touch with you while you’re away from your usual workplace.

Pre- Return:

  • Approximately 8-12 weeks prior to your return into training
  • An up-to-date health assessment (if required)
  • An agreement on the anticipated period of phased return and/or enhanced supervision (anticipated as usually 2-6 weeks in the AOMRC guidance)
  • Confirmation of LTFT or FT status planned on RTT
  • List of mandatory requirements e.g. resuscitation and safeguarding
  • The clinical activities of the enhanced supervision period (e.g. ward work, surgery/outpatient work, home visits, emergency work, out of hours work etc.)
  • The assessment methods for the enhanced supervision period (e.g. SLEs, direct observations, simulation scenarios, senior team feedback, peer feedback etc.)

Post- Return:

  • 2 weeks after your return to training or at the end of your agreed period of Enhanced Supervision, if longer
  • Mutual agreement about whether you are ready to “restart the clock” on training and commence usual duties.
  • Discuss any ongoing learning needs you might have.
  • The forms for completion during these meetings can be found here.

The forms should be uploaded to your e-portfolio and emailed to your TPD / FPD (if not conducting the meeting) and SuppoRTT.NW@hee.nhs.uk.

5. Why are there so many forms?

These forms are now available online to help make the process easier for trainees and their supervisors.  We ask that a form is completed at each SuppoRTT meeting (Pre-Absence, Pre-Return, Post-Return Review) as a record of your discussion and any agreed plans which can then be shared consistently to all parties involved in the SuppoRTT process to ensure trainees receive the bespoke support that they need for their return to training. We use the information on the form to make sure we keep you informed of activities at a time where it is relevant to you. We also use the information on the form to monitor how the SuppoRTT programme is performing generally- how many trainees are getting access to the SuppoRTT programme, what kind of support you are receiving, and whether there are gaps in our service which could be addressed which helps us to deliver the best SuppoRTT programme possible.

Uploading these forms to your e-portfolio is strongly advised, acting as a record of your engagement in the SuppoRTT programme.

The RTT-A application form has recently been updated and we are currently working with the Lead Employer to make this a much simpler process going forwards.  

6. Do I need to read the Supported Return to Training (SuppoRTT) Guidance?

Yes! You should ensure that you thoroughly read this guidance as it defines the recommended process for all stages of your absence and return. It also outlines what additional support that you may be entitled to. Remember, this guidance has been put into place to support you, promote patient safety and ensure ongoing high quality of care.

7. Will HEE contact me while I am absent?

Yes, please expect to receive emails from the SuppoRTT team with information and updates on courses available to you. Don’t forget, you can also contact the team at any stage if you need further information or support on SuppoRTT.nw@hee.nhs.uk.

8. Who is my SuppoRTT Champion?

Within most Specialty schools and Trusts across the region there is a specially appointed SuppoRTT champion. They can assist you with planning and making the most of your return to training period. Trust champions can also help ensure you have an Enhanced Supervision period on your return by liaising with the appropriate staff in your workplace.

A list of their details can be found here.

9. What are KIT, SPLIT and SRTT days?

Please visit our SuppoRTT Days webpage for details.

10. What additional funding may be available to me?

Attending a pre-existing free HEE regional course is the preferred method for re-developing competence and confidence. However, if you find an additional course that you feel will assist your RTT, there is a small amount of funding available for returners requiring further development of a specific skill set to attend external courses.

If you require funding for an activity, even just travel expenses, you should complete an RTT-A application form in advance of the activity and await notification of approval. If your application is approved we will send you an Expenses Claim Form which should be completed once you have been to the course / event. You should keep attendance records and include this in your claim.

Please visit the SuppoRTT Activities webpage for more information.

11. Can I get funding towards childcare costs for trainee attendance at SPLIT / KIT / SRTT days?

At present in our region, we do not specifically fund childcare costs as part of expenses claims.

Many regional HEE-run Return to Training Activities allow you to bring your child with you. Check with the course organiser when booking your place. There is a creche service included at our SuppoRTT KIT day event, which has been well received in past events. Breastfeeding or expressing is always encouraged and supported. Ask the course organiser if you need assistance with finding a suitable time or place to do this comfortably.

12. I am interested in working LTFT, what should I do?

For trainees considering less than full time training, they should discuss this with their FPD / TPD / Supervisor as early as possible and complete the application process through the Lead Employer. The Flexible Training Champion at your Trust can also help you with this process.

Please click here for LTFT information.

13. What if my plan of return includes an Occupational Health Report?

If Occupational Health stipulates that you need a phased return this will determine your working pattern for a period of time and will thus take precedence. However, the need for enhanced supervision may still be required. All enhanced supervision plans can run in parallel alongside your outlined working pattern.  

14. What is enhanced supervision?

Please visit the Enhanced Supervision webpage for information about enhanced supervision. 

15. When will my next ARCP take place?

The Annual Review of Competence Progression (ARCP) will take place every year for every trainee however, there are occasions where you may have more than one ARCP if you take a period of absence from your training programme.

HEE recommends;

For parental leave and OOP, whenever possible, you should have an ARCP prior to starting this period of leave. If this is not possible, within 4 weeks of return. This will review the period from the last ARCP to the start of the OOP / parental leave.

If you have been absent due to more complex reasons i.e. sick or carer’s leave, it is recommended that a date for the ARCP is discussed between yourself and your TPD / FPD / Supervisor at your Pre-Return meeting.

16. What should I do if my supervisor isn’t supporting me?

If you are not getting the required support from your Educational Supervisor, then we would recommend that you contact your TPD or FPD at your earliest opportunity in order to address your concerns. Alternatively, you can contact the SuppoRTT team for further support and guidance on SuppoRTT.nw@hee.nhs.uk.

 


Page updated 24th August 2020