7th June 2016

Returning to Clinical Practice (I)

A doctor may need or choose to take a long-term leave from work for variety of reasons. There is a lack of clear pathway for doctors who want to restart their professional career especially those with an injury, a long period ill health, caring for relatives and parenting for a child.

The British Medical Association (BMA) has introduced a “model process” which has a comprehensive, feasible and transparent approach specifically for secondary care doctors to ensure a safe and supported return to practice. It assumes that

  • He/she is qualified, have completed training and is returning to the same specialty
  • The doctor wishes to resume work in a secondary care

Defining Absence

There is no any structured return to work programme introduced yet. The circumstances for absence vary from person to person. The BMA’smodel process” advocates a case-by-case person discussion to understand each doctor’s circumstances with your clinical director. It is expected that you should be proactive and be involved in you return to work plan. If appropriate and possible, involve your GP or Specialist, Occupational Health, Responsible Officer and Human Resources (HR).

During an absence

Inform your absence and its reason to your clinical director in the early stage of your absence. It’s your choice to disclose your reasons to the clinical director and colleagues. It’s better if you clear all your reasons with your director and HR.

Your employer must inform you about the affects of your absence on your pay and other benefits, as it is conditional and varies on a case-by-case basis.

  • Doctors with a Mental Health Officer (MHO) status taking a five or more year of break may affect on their eligibility for MHO status.
  • Doctors with clinical academics with dual contract will have a different return to work conditions than the conventional clinical employment.
  • At times, absence from work will only be applicable for clinical activities not academic activities.
  • Support from the University employer may be varied for different status.
  • Keep a record of any work or Continuing Professional development (CPD) undertaken during your absence. It will help you in producing a return to programme and revalidation.

Make good term and maintain a regular contact with your clinical networks wherever possible via phone calls, emails or meet up but do not pressure. Expect to be contacted by your clinical director for update and changes in the organisation and working practices. You can also choose to discuss with you relevant college, faculty, and postgraduate dean, employing organisation or appraiser for the next step to your update in your specialty.

Call for a meet with your GP or Specialist to talk about your return to work. Discuss and ask for suggestions on your return to the post. They will assist you in your return.

Remaining phases to BMA’s “model process” is continued to Returning to Clinical Practice (2)

If you are thinking to returning to your work and need an assistance, contact us. Our compliance team can support you with all the informations and procedures for your come back.

Our medical recruitment agency offers locum, temporary and permanent placement to healthcare professionals in the UK. Check our job blog for more different placements.