The BMA is reminding new foundation 1 doctors in Scotland that they are entitled to be paid for attending mandatory shadowing and induction days intended to prepare them for working in the NHS.
Last year it emerged that some health boards were only paying F1s for the minimum four days of induction and shadowing, despite essentially insisting that they attend ‘voluntary’ induction days, for example, to receive their IT logins, without which they would not have been able to start working.
The BMA Scottish junior doctors committee made it clear that this was unacceptable and reached agreement with the Scottish Government and NHS boards that F1s should be paid for all days that were in practice mandatory. Affected F1s were subsequently reimbursed for the additional days worked.
Now Scottish junior doctors committee chair Chris Sheridan has written to all new F1s ahead of the August start date to urge them to make sure they are aware in advance of which days are voluntary and which are mandatory.
‘If you are unsure, your employing board can clarify this for you in advance,’ he writes.
‘If you believe that you are effectively being required to attend a day that your board has classed as voluntary, or that you have not been paid for one of the days where your attendance was mandatory, please contact the BMA as a matter of urgency so that we can raise this on your behalf.’
Dr Sheridan writes that it was ‘regrettable’ that some health boards had acted in that way, saying that it sent a negative message to newly qualified doctors in the first days of their employment.
‘This year there is no doubt in the instructions that have been given to NHS boards that F1 doctors must be remunerated for every single mandatory day of induction and shadowing worked,’ he adds.
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