Return to Clinical Training


A collection to support doctors to return to training after taking time away by doctors who have successfully re-entered

No-one doubts the robust evidence indicating that time out of practice can impact on your clinical competence, technical skills and confidence.

To help get you back “up-to-speed” we’ve created this space for you to share concerns, challenges and tips. Here we’ve collated useful resources from across the web and found local contacts for support to help make your transition smoother.

Got something to add? We’d love to hear from you – email rtw@generationmedics.org.uk 

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Our dangerous obsession with perfectionism is getting worse...

Social psychologist Thomas Curran explores how the pressure to be perfect — in our social media feeds, in school, at work — is driving a rise in mental illness, especially among young people.

Learn more about the causes of this phenomenon and how we can create a culture that celebrates the joys of imperfection.

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interesting research from across the pond 🇺🇸

practices to foster physician presence and connection with patients in the clinical encounter

This mixed-methods study identified 5 practices that may enhance physician presence and meaningful connection with patients in the clinical encounter:

1️⃣ prepare with intention;
2️⃣ listen intently and completely;
3️⃣ agree on what matters most;
4️⃣ connect with the patient’s story; and
5️⃣ explore emotional cues.

After an intense few years as a specialty trainee I decided to take time out because I was burnt out and needed a break but I also wanted to care for my grandparents. Three years later I’d explored three continents, lost a grandparent, gained a spouse and had no idea how to return to Medicine but I missed practise. Fast-forward eight years I’m now a Consultant with two children and a mentor to two medics wanting to return.

My advice: if you want to come back, there’s a place for you here.

-Anonymous Consultant in the South of England

Specialty-specific support for doctors returning to clinical practice

Royal College of Psychiatry

👥 Psychiatric Support Service – free, confidential support and advice service for Psychiatrists at all grades of the College’s membership who find themselves in difficulty or in need of support.

🗂 Psychiatrists’ Support Service Helpsheets – a great collection of helpsheets on topics ranging from advice on your health, managing your career, transitioning to becoming a consultant and many more.

📋 Revalidation in Psychiatry Guidance

📄 Less than full-time training in Psychiatry Information Guide

📄 Planning a portfolio career guide

📄 Looking after yourself: a survival guide

📄 Mentoring and coaching guide

🗂 Psychiatrists’ Support Service Signposting – RCPsych have listed many organisations who could help you through various challenges you might be facing.

Royal College of Surgeons

👥 Surgeon-to-Surgeon Helpline – RCS has established a telephone helpline which provides a point of personal contact between surgeons where they can discuss issues of concern with a professional colleague or peer. Besides offering a listening ear, the helpline acts as an informed signpost to appropriate sources of advice and help.

📋 Flexible working in Surgery / Less than full-time training

📄 Revalidation Guidance in Surgery (PDF Download)

Local Hospital trust support for Doctors returning to clinical practice

Our list below is not exhaustive and does not include all trusts and available resources are likely to change regularly depending on local priorities.   In order to access trust-based resources it’s advisable to contact occupational health, or look on the trust intranet/course booking system.

If you come across any services that would be useful to include in this list or any that are no longer available/have changed, please email us so we can update this page for others – rtw@generationmedics.org.uk

Thank you 👍🏽

South Yorkshire

Barnsley Hospital NHS Foundation Trust

Barnsley Hospital NHS Foundation Trust offers:

• Occupational Health Department including occupational health nurses and counsellors trained in stress management and PTSD.
• EMDR available (for PTSD)
• Workplace meditation

> Occupational Health and Wellbeing PDF Download

Doncaster and Bassetlaw Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

Doncaster and Bassetlaw Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust offers:
• A health and wellbeing service
• A health and wellbeing library
• Specific training to staff on conflict resolution, dealing with violence and aggression and dealing with difficult phone calls.

HELP Health and Wellbeing Service.

A web-based and mobile app health management resource. Self-referral.
www.dbh.wellbeingzone.co.uk– sign up and enter code: DBH1
Contact Details 0800 028 8761 www.dbh.helpeap.com
Doncaster Health and Wellbeing Library
A library of books helpful for health and well-being. At Doncaster Royal Infirmary.

Rotherham NHS Foundation Trust

Rotherham NHS Foundation Trust offers:
• Mindfulness sessions weekly in the hospital library
• One day mindfulness compassion course
• Cycle to work scheme
• Staff exercise classes such as Zumba and Yoga
• Intermittent staff financial well-being sessions
• Courses such as anxiety management, self-esteem, self-care and mindfulness.

Sheffield Health and Social Care Trust

Sheffield Health and Social Care Trust offers:
• Alcohol Support through START services
• Chaplaincy Service – chaplains@shsc.nhs.uk
• Employee Physiotherapy Service – physiotherapyreferral@shsc.nhs.uk
• Mental health and wellbeing support through IAPT Service
• Schwartz Rounds – contact Diane Crooke
• Smoking Cessation advice – smokefree@shsc.nhs.uk
• Staff Mental Health Support Group
• BME support
• Coaching Service
• Physical health initiatives e.g. bootcamp, running groups, body balance
• Mindfulness sessions available

Sheffield Teaching Hospitals Trust

Sheffield Teaching hospitals offer:

Access the Health and Well-being Intranet page on a trust computer.
• Employee Psychological support service (EPSS)
• Staff physiotherapy service
• Health checks in occupational health
• Free access to the headspace app for all staff (contact staffengagement@sth.nhs.uk)
• Mindfulness sessions run by the chaplains
• Financial wellbeing support through Sheffield Credit union
• Staff benefits at some local gyms
• Bikes on salary sacrifice
• Salary sacrifice for child care fees.
• Introduction to personal resilience talks – i.e tips to help staff look after themselves
• Preparing for retirement talks (enrol on ESR)
• Alcohol and drug support
• Sleep hygiene advice
• Chaplaincy service

Sheffield Committee of Anaesthetists in Training

Provide social and educational welfare; https://sites.google.com/site/northtrentcat/

West Yorkshire

Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust

Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust offers:
• Employee Assistant Programme (24/7 counselling) 0800 174 319
• LTHT Wellbeing Zone www.ltht.wellbeingzone.co.uk
• Staff counselling via self-referral on occupational health page of intranet or calling 01132065515
• Physiotherapy via occupational health page of intranet
• Podiatry services via telephone ext 64375 or 65524
• Gym on site available at reduced rates (leedsth-tr.healthandfitness@nhs.net)
• Health Trainer on site each Wednesday at St James Hospital (Saskia.fisher@healthforall.org.uk)
• Staff wellbeing team care.services@nhs.net or 0113 206 4060

Paediatric Trainees in Leeds

M-PATHY Mentoring service in Leeds offers mentors for paediatric trainees working in paediatrics via the junior doctor forum.
Offer Resilience training day for all ST1 and as an optional course for higher trainees

Mid Yorks NHS Trust

Mid Yorks NHS Trust offers:
• Schwartz Round
• Trust well-being service (contact occupational health)
• A “Tell Sarah” email process for reporting on good and bad aspects of the job.
• A Consultant led mentorship scheme with mentors available to trainees (contact Andrew Jackson)

South West Yorkshire Partnership NHS Foundation Trust

They offer:
• Occupational health service, including fast-track physiotherapy and support for work-related stress
• Staff retreats
• Urban retreats (one day including mindfulness)
• Mindfulness lunchtime sessions
• Trust confidential staff counselling service available by self-referral.

North Yorkshire and East Coast (NYEC)

Hull and East Yorkshire Hospitals NHS Trust

Developing resilience (replacing I’m not stressed), 1-day face to face course. Available to all staff. Self-enrol via the hey247 portal

Meditation: 1 or 2-hour lunchtime session, at Hull Royal Infirmary or Castle Hill hospital, Hull. Available to all staff. Self-enrol via the hey247 portal

Mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR), 8-week online course: Requires attendance at 1 face to face session of 2-4 hours. Available at Hull Royal Infirmary or Castle Hill hospital, Hull. Self-enrol via the hey247 portal

East Midlands

Leicester Hospitals

Health and Wellbeing services offered include:

Well-being at Work programme offers a range of on-site fitness classes ranging from Aerobics to Zumba and well-being activities.
Occupational Health services at all three of our hospitals as well as access to our Amica staff counselling services. Click here to visit the AMICA website.

West Midlands

Sandwell and West Birmingham Hospitals

Health and Wellbeing services offered include:

  • Occupational Health – Annual lifestyle checks
  • Smoking Cessation support with FREE Nicotine
  • Replacement Therapy
  • Holistic Therapies
  • Exercise initiatives and subsidised exercise classes
  • Chiropody Service
  • Flu immunisation
  • Free physiotherapy – a self-referral basis
  • BDMA counselling – FREE for all employees
  • Weight management programme
  • Onsite Gym
  • Financial Seminars
  • Debt Management Service
  • NHS Staff Discounts
  • Free eye tests and discounts with Specsavers for VDU users


Bristol, North Bristol and Weston Area Hospitals

Health and Wellbeing services offered through the Avon Partnership Occupational Health services include:

  • Physiotherapy to help with musculoskeletal problems
  • Counselling and other psychological support
  • Alcohol, drug and lifestyle screening
  • Health promotion


Gloucestershire Hospitals NHS Trust

Access to subsidised swimming and discounted gym membership
Smoking cessation support
Occupational health – through Working Well
Staff support
Childcare facilities and family-friendly working
Cycle to work schemes
A staff choir
Self-referral to physiotherapy.


Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust

Health and Wellbeing services offered include:

Aquillis Counsellors Service
Oasis Wellness Centre
Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust has a beach hut which is available for staff to hire free of charge.
Flexible working


University Hospital Southampton NHS Foundation Trust

Health and Wellbeing services offered include:

Employee assistance programme (EAP): offers a range of support and advice including emotional support, counselling and legal and debt advice. They can help with both personal and workplace issues.
Childcare: on-site nursery
In-house and external training and development opportunities
Flexible working opportunities – depending on your role, there may be opportunities to work from home, or for part-time working and annualised hours
Onsite subsidised restaurants


Royal Free London NHS Foundation Trust

Health and wellbeing services offered:

Childcare and nurseries
Health Promotion
Occupational health and wellbeing centre: access work health assessments (pre-employment and in-employment) and absence management support
Psychology service
Physiotherapy service
Staff counselling


Guys and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust

Health and wellbeing services offered:

Staff gym
Sports and social club
A comprehensive staff health and well-being programme, ‘5 ways to a healthier YOU’
Subsidised on-site nursery and childcare vouchers
Weekly lunchtime walking group
Ride to work scheme
Employee assistance programme
Free staff counselling service
Free stop smoking service.

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