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Scotland Deanery

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Trainee information

Find out here if you are eligible for LTFT training


All trainees, both men and women, are eligible to apply for LTFT training. Those wishing to do so must show that training on a full-time basis would not be practical for them for well-founded individual reasons (EC Directive 93/16/EEC [PDF]).

It is for the Associate Dean (LTFT training) and, where appropriate, the Postgraduate Dean, to determine whether a trainee's request to train LTFT is well founded. If a trainee does not meet the eligibility criteria, they may wish to discuss alternative career pathways with the Trainee Development and Wellbeing service who can provide careers advice, or with their Training Programme Director (TPD) and Associate Postgraduate Dean (APGD)  for their specialty.

Formally, the only requirement to be permitted to train LTFT is a well-founded individual reason. These will be prioritised – see list below as a guide:

Reasons for requesting LTFT training - illustrative list:

  • Trainees with a disability or ill health – This may include ongoing medical procedures such as fertility treatment.
  • Trainees with caring responsibilities (e.g. for children, or for an ill/disabled partner, relative or other dependant).
  • Welfare and wellbeing – There may be reasons not directly related to disability or ill health where trainees may benefit from a reduced working pattern. This could have a beneficial effect on their health and wellbeing (e.g. reducing potential burnout).
  • Unique opportunities – A trainee is offered a unique opportunity for their own personal/professional development and this will affect their ability to train full time (e.g. training for national/international sporting events, or a short-term extraordinary responsibility such as membership of a national committee or continuing medical research as a bridge to progression in integrated academic training). 
  • Religious commitment – A trainee has a religious commitment that involves training for a particular role and requires a specific time commitment resulting in the need to work less than full time. 
  • Non-medical development – A trainee is offered non-medical professional development (e.g., management courses, law courses or fine arts courses) that requires a specific time commitment resulting in the need to work less than full time.
  • Flexibility for training and career development with the option to train less than full time with flexibility that might enable development of a broad career portfolio.

All requests for LTFT training will be treated positively. However, the overall training capacity of a training programme and service commitment will have to be taken into consideration.

Access to LTFT training is resource limited. Whilst accepting that there is no automatic right to LTFT training, provisions should be made for those with most need. Deanery funding provides the educational component of the basic salary, and banding arrangements are the responsibility of the employer. These funding arrangements are intended to avoid financial disincentives for employers.

The availability of LTFT training is ultimately dependant on available funding from both the Deanery and NHS employers; however, where possible appropriate measures should be taken to facilitate access.

Aims of LTFT Training

  • To ensure continued and adequate training for those who cannot work full-time.
  • To retain doctors within the medical workforce who are unable to continue their training on a full-time basis.
  • To maintain a balance between LTFT arrangements, educational requirements, and the Service needs.
  • To promote career development and work/life balance for doctors training within NHS Scotland.

General Principles

  • Access to LTFT training should be considered for all eligible doctors regardless of grade or specialty and dependent only on need.
  • Access to LTFT training is resource-limited, and flexible training is dependent on available funding from both the Deanery and NHS Board.
  • Access is not 'of right' and criteria for appropriate need must be met.
  • Deanery funding contributes pro rata basic salary at mid-point, and  F A,B or C banding arrangements are funded by employing Boards (pay information [DOC]).
  • Access to LTFT training is equitable nationally, with a transparent and uniform approach across all geographies and with local assessment of applications within a national framework.
  • Applications may be made at any time during training.
  • Educational capacity and approval must be available for the post.  There should be evidence of satisfactory ARCP progress to date.



This page was last updated on: 14.05.2024 at 14.18