Employer implications of the SAS Charter

Jane Cole provides an update of what employers need to do to meet the education and training requirements for SAS doctors as outlined in the Charter developed last December. It was written by the BMA and supported by Academy of Medical Royal Colleges (AoMRC), Health Education England (HEE) and NHS Employers.
SAS doctors are Specialty doctors, Associates Specialists, Staff Grades, Hospital Practitioners, Clinical Assistants, Senior Clinical Medical Officers and Clinical Medical Officers who play an important role in service delivery. Local Negotiating Committes (LNC’s) are requested to commit to use the Charter to provide the optimum working  enviroment for this valuable group of doctors in England and Wales which have often been overlooked by Trusts in the past.
Key points for employers:
  • Include Charter on LNC Agenda
  • Provide a working environment to recognise the SAS group’s diversity.
  • Ensure SAS doctors have support and resources to develop both personally and professionally.
  • Ensure SAS doctors able to freely raise concerns about patient safety.
  • Ensure LNC membership represents SAS group.
  • Support appointment of SAS Tutor.
  • Trust to liaise with local Associate Dean acting as Lead for management, support and funding for SAS doctors.
  • Consider drafting Trust SAS doctors Charter.
Minimum conditions
  • Contract of employment.
  • Mutually agreed job plan which is reviewed annually.
  • Adequate Supporting Professional Activity time (SPA) time for the role.
  • Support to meet pay thresholds.
  • Hours of work compliant with working time regulations.
  • Timetable of work recognises importance of balance between day time and out of hours work.
  • Up to date appraisal
  • Access to discretionary and optional points, as appropriate.
  • Appropriate access to office accommodation, technology and administrative support.
  • Effective induction.
  • Clear reporting arrangements.
  • Access to pastoral support and occupational health provision.
  • Access to appropriate data for appraisal and revalidation purposes.
  • Where SAS doctor is clinically responsibly for patient care this should be clearly documented, and appropriately displayed, as per AoMRC guidance on Taking Responsibility issued in June 2014.
  • Access to support and guidance relating to applying for Certificate of Eligibility for Specialist Registration (CESR)
  • Access to appraisal training.
  • Access to internal and external CPD activities, time off and funding.
  • Access to SAS Tutor, Clinical Lead and mentor for professional and personal development.
  • Consider access to secondment in line with local policies.
Involvement in organisation structures
  • Encourage senior SAS doctors to get involved with the management of the Directorate.
  • Permanent SAS doctors should be members of Medical Staff Committee etc. and invited to attend Directorate meetings where possible.
  • Access to time off for Trade Union duties in the same way as other colleagues.
  • Involve SAS doctors in the recruitment process of other SAS staff.
Useful resources
·         BMA SAS Charter
·         BMA Guidance on autonomy for SAS doctors
·         AoMRC Guidance on Taking Responsibility: Accountable Clinical and Informing Patients
·         GMC’s guidance on CESR qualification pathway
Medical Staffing Master Class
The one day Masterclass is suitable for Human Resources, Medical Staffing, Medical Education or Divisional Managers who would like a good overview of the medical career structure, how they are appointed and employed. 
The dates/venues for Master Classes are as follows:
Monday 28 September 2015   York   (near main station)
Wednesday 14 October 2015      London (Central near Russell sq tube)
Tuesday 20 October 2015      Manchester (near Piccadilly station)
Wednesday 4 November 2015     Bristol (near Bristol Parkway station) 
Tuesday 24 November 2015   Birmingham (near New Street station)
or please contact us via email at janecoleassociates@btinternet.com
Jane Cole Associates, Medical Personnel Solutions is a leading training and consultancy service to NHS Trusts and other organisations specialising in Medical Staffing.


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