WORKFORCE: East Kent Hospitals University NHS Foundation Trust is one of 16 trusts that have received investment in pilot schemes to improve doctor training.

Medical Education England’s Better Training Better Care programme has invested £1m into pilot projects aimed at improving training and education for trainee doctors.

East Kent Hospitals University FT found its trainee doctors were not receiving all training experiences and that the quality of patient care on weekends was not as high as during the week.

To help improve this, it has implemented “hot” emergency department and “cold” ward-based teams for trainees to ensure all levels of doctors receive both acute and specialty experience.

Susan Kennedy, education advisor at East Kent, said: “Trainee doctors will experience a block of hot team work – an intense, learning-rich experience – which will be followed by a longer spell on the cold team, during which specialist activities like clinics, ambulatory care and procedural experience can be undertaken.

“At weekends, the cold team will be multi-professional with a registrar, foundation doctor, a band 6 nurse and additional phlebotomy support.”

“This new way of working will improve handovers, improve supervision at weekends and in turn improve patient care and safety, especially on weekends. We look forward to reporting back on the success and seeing this change implemented in other trusts.”