Flexible Training / Career Breaks

This page features an announcement from the RCGP, and advice and guidance on Less than Full-Time Training, Out of Programme Requests, Career Break Pensions, and Maternity Leave.  For information on Courses and Study see Trainees > Courses and Study Leave.

GMC Statement – Time Out of Training

The whole document is here for your information.  The key point is 4Q which we have copied below for you to read.

4Q: If I am absent for more than 14 days (when I would normally be at work) will my CCT date automatically be amended?

Answer: The deanery will review each case of absence of 14 days or more in a single year and look at various factors:-

  • Timing of the absence – Is it early in training or in the final months of the programme? Is it immediately after a period of annual leave?
  • History of absence – Has the trainee had periods of absence repeatedly?
  • Nature of the absence – Has the trainee been able to continue to participate in some elements of the training such as reading, online study etc.?
  • Nature of the training that has been missed.
  • Performance and assessments.

The Deanery will then consider whether the trainee has been able to demonstrate the curriculum competencies for the ARCP level, whether any deficiencies could be addressed through a period of targeted training or whether training needs to be extended.

Less Than Full Time Training (LTFTT) – Guidance

All trainees who wish to be considered for Less Than Full Time Training should complete and return the LTFTT Application Form and the LTFTT Personal Details Document to the Wessex Deanery (phone 01962 718447 or email Fenella Williams at the deanery).

Calculating study leave allowance and planning a timetable can be confusing if you are an ST3 training LTFT. Please have a look at this document which gives some helpful advice:

Timetabling for LTFT ST3 trainees

After Approval

Once approval for flexible training has been granted-you need to refer back to the Deanery LTFTT documents for information on basic requirements and planning your post and then liaise with the local Programme Director, who will review the options with you.

It must not be assumed that supernumerary funding for flexible training will be granted and the option of a slot share may have to be considered.

To obtain post approval for flexible training the following are required:-

  • Completion of a new Educational Plan for a Hospital LTFTT Post Form (It replaces the old PMETB/GMC form), this used to be a mandatory form, but the GMC no longer require its completion. However Local deanery policy is that it should be completed, it contains useful information required for their records.
  • A weekly timetable for the post, developed in conjunction with the Clinical Supervisor, to illustrate daytime and OOH working arrangements (see Deanery Guidance for suggested timetable)
  • A PDP for the post: agreed with the clinical supervisor, based on identified learning needs from the curriculum.

Once this paperwork has been completed, it should be sent to the local Programme Director, who will attach a covering letter of approval. The Educational Plan for a Hospital LTFTT Post Form will need countersigning by the patch Associate Director.

Trainees should complete an Educational Plan for a Hospital LTFTT Post Form before each new part time post and send it to the Deanery.

Important information for employers can be found through the following sites:


Guidance from ACAS on requesting flexible working


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Out of Programme Requests

Wessex Deanery has produced this guidance document and has more information on its website; scroll down to Out of Programme Requests.

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Career Break – Pensions Advice

Pay Circular – Employment Breaks – a useful national document on pensions and career breaks.

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Programme Transfer Request

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