Foundation Year 2 Doctors in General Practice
This guidance sheet is designed to provide you with some practical information to help you through your placement in GP, but don’t forget that the staff in your Postgraduate Centre are still there to support you and can answer any additional queries that you have.
We hope you enjoy and make the most of your post in GP.
What should you do in preparation for your post in GP?
Find out where you are going and how you will get there. Many of the practices are some distance from the acute Trust and you may need to make specific transport arrangements.
At least 2 weeks before your post starts, you should contact your GP supervisor by telephone and introduce yourself. This is a professional courtesy but is also a useful opportunity for you both to consider your expectations for your GP post, any personal circumstances that will affect you working at the practice or educational objectives that you have. The Postgraduate Centre may be able to put the current F2 in touch with you to pass on any useful advice.
What should you expect when you arrive in the practice?
When you arrive in GP you will spend the first week, or best part of that week, on an induction programme. You should ensure that you take full advantage of this opportunity to find your way around the practice, understand a bit more about the practice area, sit in on surgeries, meet the doctors and other staff, learn how to use the computer system, and know how to get yourself a cup of coffee! You should make sure that you know where to find key equipment, know the whereabouts of panic buttons and where and how to contact key staff if you find yourself dealing with an emergency. The practice will adapt the induction to suit your individual needs so ask your supervisor if there is something you would particularly like to be covered.
After induction, it is likely that you will spend a few days in directly supervised practice until you are ready to see patients on your own (with supervision provided by other means).
Holiday arrangements during GP
It is vital that any annual leave during the GP post is agreed with the GP supervisor in advance or practice manager, even if you are booking the leave before you are in the GP post. Please liaise with both the Postgraduate Centre Staff and the practice before making any holiday arrangements or ensure that your Centre Manager has liaised with the GP practice on your behalf.
Similarly, please liaise with your Postgraduate Centre and GP Supervisor should you need to make arrangements for additional leave such as parental leave, compassionate leave, study leave or special leave for interviews whilst in GP. You should expect usual trust rules to apply regarding notice for leave requests i.e., 6-8 weeks depending on your employer. Practices may be able to accommodate less notice than this, but it is at their discretion.
Who should you inform if you take sick leave?
Please inform your Trust HR Department and your GP Supervisor/Practice Manager if it is necessary for you to take any sick leave and ensure you tell your Trust when you have returned to GP.
What if you are incurring additional travel expenses during your F2 post?
Travel expenses can be claimed in line with the revised HEE Relocation policy detailed in the Excess Mileage Claims Section point 30 onwards. The website also provides copies of Relocation and excess mileage claim forms for each trust. Please also refer to the GP Home Visit Mileage page on the Severn Foundation website.
Any queries please refer to your Post Graduate Education Centre contacts. All claims must be submitted through your trust.
What F2 teaching should I attend whilst in GP?
You can attend regional F2 regional teaching during GP with appropriate notice given for study leave approval. Any teaching sessions delivered by the GPs within the Practice can count towards your total hours for F2 teaching if evidenced by a form in your portfolio (see F2 teaching guidance).
Should you still complete SLEs whilst in GP?
Yes. Your GP Supervisor will be prepared to expect this. Remember though it is your responsibility to make sure your assessments are completed.
Who is your contact for any queries, problems or concerns whilst in GP?
If you are experiencing problems in GP speak to your GP supervisor in the first instance. If this is not possible, or you feel awkward approaching your GP Supervisor, please speak to your Educational supervisor, Foundation Training Programme Director or your Trust Postgraduate Centre Manager. Whilst in GP, the Trust is still your employer for all HR related issues.
If you encounter any issues whilst working in GP, we encourage you to feed these back to your supervisor during the placement. GPs are usually keen to improve experiences wherever they can, and constructive feedback is normally viewed positively.
What working hours are expected in GP?
Your working/learning week will be 40 hours. This is worked on Monday to Friday. You must not work out of these hours during General Practice. If you work extra hours and agree to time off in lieu you must ensure that you take this whilst working in the practice as you might not be able to claim it in your next placement within the hospital.
Travel time from your home to the GP Practice that is more than the time it normally takes you to travel to the hospital base will count towards your working week. For example, journey from home to base hospital 30 mins, journey from home to GP Practice 60 mins. The extra 30 mins each way (total 60 mins per day) can be deducted from your 40 hour working week. You should discuss this with your supervisor and agree clinical working hours before you commence your GP post.
What can you expect from a typical week in GP?
Every experience should be an opportunity for learning and your supervisor will try to get the balance right between learning by seeing your own patients in a formal surgery setting and learning through other opportunities.
The following table is an indicator of how a typical week might run but all practices and trainees are different so don’t expect your time to be spent exactly like this:
6 x Surgeries
- These will usually start at 30 minute appointments for each patient and reduce to 20 minute appointments as you develop your skills, knowledge, and confidence (and your supervisor develops the same in you)
- You must always have access to another doctor (not a locum doctor) but not necessarily your supervisor in the practice.
- You may not have a dedicated room solely for your use. You will see patients in your own room but may find you use different rooms on different days.
- You may attend home visits but always make sure you discuss any unaccompanied visit before and afterwards with your supervisor.
2 x sessions in other learning opportunities
This could be:
- 1:1 session with your trainer or other members of the practice team
- Small group work with other learners in the practice
- Small group work with F2s from other practices
- Shadowing or observing other health professionals or service providers e.g., out patient clinics pertinent to primary care, palliative care teams, voluntary sector workers
1 x session on
project work or directed study
It may be possible for you to undertake a project or audit during your time in GP. As part of your Self Development Time, you may be able to do some research, collect the data, write up the project and present your work to the practice team F2 teaching session You can attend a teaching session from the regional teaching programme. You should book study leave in advance with sufficient notice to the practice to plan clinical work.
Practices are not required to offer formal teaching sessions, although you may find that some practices do. Even if the practice in which you are based does not offer teaching on a regular basis, if you would find it useful to cover a specific topic, please ask your GP supervisor who may be able to arrange something.
You are covered by NHS indemnity through your contract of employment with the acute trust. You are advised to let your medical defence union know that you have a GP placement as part of your F2 programme, but this shouldn’t make any difference to your cover.