F2 Swaps Policy

Please note that due to oversubscription there are no vacant F2 programmes for August 2022. This means our ability to facilitate swaps will be limited.


In order to offer some flexibility in its allocation of programmes whilst ensuring rotations are balanced, the Severn Foundation School will facilitate a swap process whereby F1 doctors can apply for a swap of their matched F2 programme. This will be managed in conjunction with the F2 Special Circumstances, F2 Overseas and Time Out of Foundation Programme application processes.


Broadening the Foundation Programme 2014, recommended that foundation doctors should not repeat posts from the same specialty grouping within their 2 years and 80% of foundation doctors must have a community placement. In order to meet these requirements, foundation doctors are allocated to a 2 year fixed foundation programme which is matched to a compliant rotation i.e. one where the F2 programme is an appropriate balance with their F1 programme.

The School recognises that this allocation of a 2 year programme restricts the choice of posts that foundation doctors can have and, while our obligation is to provide each doctor in training with a generic programme in which they can achieve the outcomes of the curriculum, we are keen to improve foundation doctors’ satisfaction with their programmes if possible.


  1. Part-way through their first year, F1 doctors will have the opportunity to apply for a swap of their F2 programme within the Severn Foundation School. Foundation doctors will be able to request a swap of their F2 rotation within their allocated Trust, or to a rotation in another Trust within Severn
  2. The School’s ability to meet requests for swaps will depend on several criteria including:
    1. the number of F2 vacancies at the time of running the process
    2. the suitability of potential rotations for any individual foundation doctor (it is the responsibility of the School to ensure that foundation doctors do not repeat posts from the same specialty grouping during their 2 year programme unless one of those posts is community-facing)
    3. the impact of resultant vacancies on patient safety
  3. Foundation doctors can only apply to swap their full programme i.e. it will not be possible to apply to swap part of a rotation (e.g. Oncology for Cardiology), and priority will be given to Special Circumstances applications.
  4. By requesting a swap, foundation doctors agree to put their existing allocated programme into the pool. If a swap is approved, the foundation doctor must accept the swap – they cannot change their mind, as their own programme may have been allocated to another foundation doctor.
  5. If foundation doctors have completed a 4 month F1 post that entails more than one specialty (e.g. the 4 month post is Histopathology/MAU) they can be matched to an F2 programme with any of these posts included in them.
  6. If, in line with the above principles, it is not possible to facilitate a swap that matches a foundation doctor's stated requirements as detailed in their application form, they will remain in their original allocated F2 rotation.
  7. The matching process will be transparent and fair and will not impose an unnecessary administrative burden on the foundation doctors or on personnel associated with the Foundation School.
  8. There will be an appeals process for decisions made as part of the swaps process.

Less than full time foundation doctors (LTFT)

Matching LTFT foundation doctors to F2 posts requires special consideration. It may not be possible for LTFT foundation doctors to secure the rotation they would have gained if they were full-time foundation doctors. This is because by virtue of accepting LTFT training, foundation doctors may be required to slot-share, the full time post may be unsuitable for a LTFT foundation doctor or the post may not have the capacity to take the LTFT foundation doctor in a supernumerary capacity.

An LTFT foundation doctor can still apply for a swap of F2 programme under the policy but it is likely that decisions about their programme will be made outside the policy in order to accommodate other factors.

Academic foundation doctors

Academic Foundation Doctors may apply to swap their AF2 rotation, but swaps will only be considered with other Academic applicants. An Academic foundation doctor cannot apply to swap into a non-Academic rotation, and a non-Academic F1 cannot apply to swap into an Academic Foundation Programme.

Special Circumstances

Foundation doctors wishing to change their F2 programme due to Special Circumstances will need to apply through the F2 Special Circumstances process.

Linked Applicants

Foundation doctors who entered the Severn Foundation School as linked applicants, will be treated as unlinked in the swaps process unless both indicate on their individual forms that they want to be treated as linked. Foundation doctors who were not originally linked but now want to be treated as linked for the F2 swaps process will both need to indicate that on their application forms.

Linking applications with someone else’s may reduce the chances of either foundation doctor achieving a swap of location.

Withdrawal from the Swaps Process

Once the swaps application window has closed, submitted requests cannot be withdrawn. Swaps of rotations cannot be made outside of the School’s official process.


  1. All F1s will be notified swaps process including the application window and deadline for applying.
  2. Priority will be given to foundation doctors who have special circumstances.
  3. All other swaps will be allocated randomly.
  4. An F2 rotation swap will only be approved if it provides the foundation doctor with a balanced overall Foundation Programme in conjunction with their F1 rotation.
  5. The Foundation School will notify foundation doctors of the outcome of their application.
  6. The Foundation School will notify Trusts of any change to their expected F2 intake resulting from the swaps process.

F2 Swaps Application Form

An indicative programme list is available below should you require it, however these programmes are subject to change.

 Programme List

Application Window: Monday 20 December 2021 - Sunday 30 January 2022