About the GP Retention Scheme
This scheme is designed to provide opportunities for doctors to maintain their clinical skills through a part-time working commitment, which includes educational and mentoring support. This is run jointly by Health Education North East and NHS England. Follow the link below.
Purpose and benefits:
The scheme provide opportunities to retain doctors in the GP workforce through a part-time commitment. For many GPs these posts provide an important means to sustain their input to general practice whilst they have well founded reasons to limit their working hours. The post should offer the opportunity to take part in all the primary care team activities (e.g. team meetings and education) not just to deliver a clinical service. The educational emphasis of the scheme means that the Continuing Professional Development (CPD) entitlement must be delivered in full as well as weekly protected mentoring (by the educational supervisor or other team members). Retainer doctors are employed by a practice on a model retainer contract based on the national model salaried contract, for up to 5 years with annual review.
Mentoring, supervision and career development on the scheme
Retainers receive protected time for CPD (prorata according to their contract subject to a minimum of 28 hours/annum) and also receive weekly mentoring from their educational supervisor.
Retainer doctors are encouraged to develop (or retain) additional skills whilst on the scheme, such as appraiser skills, medical student teaching, a clinical assistant role for example in family planning, benefits tribunals work, etc. Some retainers do a limited amount of Out of hours work to retain urgent care skills, or work limited sessions in Accident and emergency. The Northern region retainer scheme exit data indicates excellent retention rates for retainers after the end if the scheme with most staying on at their retainer practice in a salaried capacity or as a partner.
Rules and how to apply
How to apply
GPs apply using the application form available on the HEE NE retainer page. Applications are submitted to HEE NE. The applicant and the practice should read the retainer scheme handbook in full before completing the application.
The retainer doctor’s contract will be for a minimum of 1 weekly session and a maximum of 4.The doctor must be on a performers list, and registered with the GMC and must arrange their Medical defence cover (which is usually reduced for scheme members). They must engage in annual appraisal.
The North East Scheme's contact is Dr Iain Lawther who will be happy to answer any specific questions from those wishing to consider joining the scheme.