Less Than Full Time Training (LTFT)

As a speciality, Anaesthetics has a very positive approach to LTFT training. The Welsh School of Anaesthetics particularly has a strong history of support for LTFT training and up to 20% of our trainees at any one time work part time. We recognise this may increase further in the future and we aim to work hard at integrating part time working with the full time workforce in accordance with the NHS Employers guidance document Doctors in Flexible Training: Principles underpinning the new arrangements for flexible training

LTFT training is open to all anaesthetic trainees in Wales, male and female, who have well founded reasons which prevent them from working full time.

In order to apply for LTFT the trainee must be already be in post or be appointed to that grade in open competition. Eligibility criteria will include:

  • Being the parent of a young child
  • Caring for an ill or disabled relative
  • Having a disability
  • Having a health problem.

LTFT training provides the same range of experience and education as full time posts but obviously takes longer to fulfil the educational requirement of the curriculum as set out by The Royal College of Anaesthetists. LTFT trainees are expected to work pro rata a percentage of the full timers work including weekday and weekend days and nights.

In Wales we have been at the forefront of the integration of part time and full time working and have a large numbers of LTFT trainees in a range of slot shares and reduced hours posts. Trainees usually work at either 60 or 70% of full time as this gives them enough clinical exposure to progress in training while still maintaining their work life balance. Posts are usually allocated based on the rotation the trainee was appointed to and may include placements in North and South Wales.

Application for LTFT training in Anaesthetics is via the Welsh Deanery website. Application forms are available to download from the website and should be filled in at least 3-4 months before the planned start date. Applications need to be discussed with the Training Programme Director, the LTFT adviser in Anaesthetics and with the College Tutor of the department where the trainee is in post. A flow diagram in the information pack indicates the steps required before the LTFT trainee takes up their post.

Once eligibility has been assessed and LTFT training is approved the trainee will be required to fill out a LTFT training plan which will include a job plan looking at the structure of their working week and on call commitments. This will include attendance at regular teaching appropriate to their grade. LTFT trainees are expected to progress at a pro rata rate compared to their full time colleagues and take exams at appropriate times. They will be assessed at yearly intervals by the ARCP process to ensure they are progressing satisfactorily.

LTFT training has worked well in Anaesthetics in Wales at core and speciality training levels with many trainees progressing to both part time and full time consultant posts. Many trainees have moved both in and out of LTFT training as their careers, families and needs have changed. Although the majority of LTFT trainees are female with small children, this option has worked very successfully for some of our male trainees and also for those working part time for health reasons. The Welsh Deanery has won awards for its family friendly policies and we in Anaesthetics are always happy to discuss with individuals the option for LTFT training.

Contact list

Dr Kathy Woods LTFT Adviser for Welsh School and College Tutor, Newport Kathy.Woods@wales.nhs.uk
Dr Sarah Harries ST Training Programme Director sarah.harries2@wales.nhs.uk
Dr Caroline Evans CT Training Programme Director caroline.evans5@wales.nhs.uk
Dr Liz Boucher UHW LTFT local adviser elizabeth.boucher@wales.nhs.uk
Dr Eleanor Lewis Swansea LTFT local adviser eleanor.lewis3@wales.nhs.uk

Tracey Shellard LTFT Officer Deanery: flexibletrg@cardiff.ac.uk

Returning to Work

Returning to clinical anaesthesia following a period of absence e.g. maternity leave, prolonged sick leave or out-of-programme research/experience can be particularly stressful. The School has supported the development of a number of measures to make the process as seamless and supportive as possible. It is essential that trainees meet with their ES prior to embarking on a prolonged prior to leave, to discuss plans for staying in touch e.g. use of KIT days, attending a 'Return to Work' study day and set a target date for meeting the designated return to work advisor before the actual return to clinical duties to go through an educational checklist. Further information and support when returning to work can be found within the documents below: