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Trainee information

Undertaking additional work

Undertaking additional work

If you are currently working within a Postgraduate Medical Education Training Programme and undertake additional work whilst employed (locum work, private work etc)  within a training post then the following link by COPMeD is of relevance to you COPMed Guidance.


The Scotland Deanery has developed some Frequently Asked Questions to help trainees


Q1. Is it OK for me to do locum shifts whilst on a Scotland Deanery training programme?

Trainees primary focus should be on their GMC approved training programme with the priority being to complete all the mandatory requirements of the programme and cover the curriculum. 

Trainees may be permitted to undertake occasional locum shifts but it would not be expected that this would be a regular commitment.

All trainees would need to comply with the considerations and recommendations of the COPMeD document.

NOTE: GPSTs are not able to undertake any additional work in a GP setting other than formal exchanges to a different approved Training Practice that have been agreed with the Training Programme Director (TPD).


Q2. Do I need to tell anyone that I am doing locum work?

Yes – you must seek support and approval from your Educational Supervisor for any additional work out-with your normal training programme. It would be good practice to inform your TPD also.


Q3. Can I do regular locum work when I am training on a LTFT basis?

Trainees are generally approved to train LTFT normally for reasons of health or caring responsibility. Trainees with health problems leading to them needing to complete their training on a LTFT basis would not be expected to do additional work on a locum basis. Trainees who are LTFT for caring responsibilities who seek to do regular additional locum work would need to discuss with their TPD or the Associate Dean for LTFT training as a review of the current arrangement for LTFT may be more appropriate.


Q4. Can I undertake locum work if I have had an unsatisfactory ARCP?

As per Q1, the priority is for trainees to progress smoothly through training. Any trainee who is not making satisfactory progress is unlikely to be given approval to do any additional work as it would be important to ensure that no external factors were contributing to the failure to progress at the expected rate.

Q5. How do I declare my extra work to my Responsible Officer (RO)?

When completing your SOAR declaration each year, you should add details of any additional work under the “work history” tab. This will ensure that your Educational Supervisor, TPD, and the RO are aware of this work and can discuss it with you.


Q6.  Do I need additional insurance to do locum work?

Trainees are covered for work within their training programme by CNORIS, the indemnity scheme provided by NHS National Services Scotland, against claims of medical negligence arising from the course of this employment. However, in certain circumstances (especially in services for which you receive a separate fee, such as locum work) you may not be covered by the indemnity. The Health Department therefore advises that you maintain membership of a medical defence organisation. A Copy of NHS Circular 1989 (PCS) 32 on indemnity arrangements issued in December 1989 is available at http://www.sehd.scot.nhs.uk/pcs/PCS(1989)32.pdf


Q7. What should I do if there is a complaint arising from any additional work I undertake?

Any complaint arising from work undertaken as a locum will be managed primarily by the employing agency and trainees should seek the advice of their medical defence union. However, it is also essential that NES is made aware of the complaint as there may be an impact on training. The trainee should advise their Educational Supervisor and TPD about the complaint, which must also be declared on SOAR.


Q8. Does other work (non-doctor work) also fall under these requirements?

We recognise that an increasing number of trainees are now from allied health professional backgrounds (such as Paramedic, Pharmacy, Nursing etc), and may have retained professional recognition / registration in that other speciality and wish to undertake extra work in that capacity.

All the principles outlined in the other questions, and in the COPMED document, would be deemed to apply in these circumstances, including the requirement to declare the additional work on SOAR. It would be particularly important for these doctors to ensure that they had retained professional registration within their previous field and hold appropriate indemnity in that role.

This page was last updated on: 28.03.2024 at 12.00