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Supporting doctors returning to training after time out

We are committed to developing a supportive, high quality learning environment for all doctors in training, regardless of their personal circumstances. We have launched a call for ideas to help us develop a programme of activities to better support junior doctors returning to training after time out.

We will be developing an innovative, evidence-based programme of interventions to better help doctors “get back up to speed” as they return to training.

The Academy of Medical Royal Colleges’ Maternity / Paternity 2016 Survey Results outlined some of the potential difficulties associated with return to training, and recommended that doctors need support with regaining confidence as well as refreshing their technical skills and knowledge of current protocols.

In the ACAS Junior Doctors’ Contract Agreement, we committed to develop evidence-based, innovative approaches for supporting junior doctors returning to training after time out, for example after maternity leave, prolonged sick leave, undertaking academic research or other Out of Programme activities.

Call for ideas

We are keen to understand the unique pastoral and training requirements of these trainees. Through a call for ideas, we want to hear views and ideas about the challenges they face, identify where effective support is being provided for these doctors; and consider innovative solutions that are evidenced but perhaps as yet untested.

This could include support with regaining confidence as well as refreshing technical skills and knowledge of current protocols, or involve a range of interventions including, but not limited to, accelerated training opportunities, simulation, mentorship, and signposting to information and support services.


We are seeking the views of junior doctors and their representative bodies, educators, medical royal colleges, employers, and associated professions.

A high quality learning environment is a multi-professional learning environment that values and benefits doctors as well as the other professionals within the clinical team, so we welcome feedback from other clinical professions, particularly where they have developed return to training or practice interventions for their professional group.

Responding to the call for ideas

The call for ideas can be accessed here and will run to 23:59 GMT 4 August 2017.

Next steps

The evidence gathered will inform an Accelerated Return to Training strategy and delivery plan, which we plan to publish before the end of 2017.

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