Lancashire Teaching Hospitals has taken part in a report commissioned by the General Medical Council (GMC) to look at how doctors can be better supported in delivering patient care in the UK’s health systems.
A case study on the Trust’s Clinical Placement Facilitators (CPFs) was featured in the Caring for doctors, Caring for patients report as an example of good practice in supporting medical students to become excellent doctors.
Band six and seven nurses work closely with medical students and clinical placement supervisors in identifying struggling students and supporting, guiding and teaching them within each placement.
The mentors help to organise placements based on the needs of the student, taking into account any mitigating circumstances and encouraging them to come forward with any concerns they may have.
Karen Swindley, Strategy, Workforce and Education Director at Lancashire Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, said: “We are delighted to have been recognised for our work in supporting the wellbeing of our staff, as this is paramount to ensuring our patients receive the best possible care. Providing CPFs means medical students feel safe and listened to, and helps us as a Trust to attract, retain and develop talent.”
Medical students at the Trust were invited to comment on their experiences of the mentoring scheme. They said:
“CPFs make a huge difference and are invaluable for learning and support. They go out of their way to make your placement run smoothly. I feel lucky I got a placement at Preston.”
“Excellent CPFs in organising medical students’ learning, so we can make the most out of our placement.”
Leading organisational psychologist Professor Michael West and clinical psychiatrist and leader in mental health Dame Denise Coia found that creating supportive, safe and inclusive working environments was key, and that doctors, as well as all other members of staff, have an ‘ABC of core needs’ if they are to remain well and stay motivated while at work:
- Autonomy/control – the need to have control over work lives and to act consistently with work and life values.
- Belonging – the need to be connected to, cared for and caring of others in the workplace, and to feel valued, respected and supported.
- Competence – the need to experience effectiveness and deliver valued outcomes, such as high-quality care.
Charlie Massey, Chief Executive at the General Medical Council, said:
“Medicine has always been a high-pressure career, but doctors are telling us that the demands on them are now so great they risk becoming unmanageable. As a result, their own health suffers, and patient care is compromised.
“Solutions are not easy, but this report shows that there are already many examples of great practice to build from. As a regulator, we will use all our influence and powers to support doctors and medical students.”