SAS doctors in the East Midlands number approximately 750 doctors across 14 Trusts. We make up a considerable part of the medical workforce.
What is a SAS Doctor? SAS means Specialty and Associate Specialist Doctors who are employed on a permanent national standard contract. We work in a range of specialties from psychiatry to paediatrics to ENT in which we specialise and have often developed a niche area of expertise. Our level of experience ranges from equivalent to Specialist Trainee ST3 to consultants of many years’ practice.
SAS have often made a choice to step outside standard training pathways for many different reasons. It is a choice worth considering.
Our roles respond to workforce needs but also allow for development being supported by job planning, appraisal with Personal Development Plans (PDP) and the SAS development Fund.
The SAS Charter sets out the standards the Trust we are employed by should meet.( see resource page) The SAS tutors play a key role in supporting us and advocating on our behalf with the Trusts.(See Tutor page) SAS are represented on the LNC.
Appraisal: This will be run by your Trust who will have an appraisal lead. You should be given time to prepare and attend your appraisal. It occurs annually. Most places use a eportfolio. It feeds into Revalidation.( for those used to Trainee language - its like an ARCP)
Use it to show what you really do, time for reflection and planning for your next steps
Job Planning : This is integral to the appraisal. You may need to engage all your negotiating skills to ensure that your job plan truly reflects what you do and allows you time to develop yourself and the service.
Payscale progression : See Resources page.
Study Leave : All SAS are entitled to study leave which will be laid out in your contract. In addition to Trust study leave budgets SAS have access to training through the SAS development Fund – ask your SAS tutor for details. There are opportunities to request funding for specific areas of training or secondments that you may need for your own development.
There are lots of non-clinical opportunities out there depending on your level of experience. Roles that some of your East Midland SAS colleagues doing are:
Trust appraisal lead
Departmental Lead for a specialist procedure
Clinical specialty lead
Associate Medical Director
Medical student lead for Trust
Medical student examiner
Educational supervisor ( this is college dependant)
Clinical supervisor ( this is college dependant)
If you want to try something – build up your experience, evidence it in your portfolio and ASK!
Even if an advert or opportunity doesn't specifically mention SAS it is still worth asking, the SAS group may just have been unintentionally left off.
Find yourself a mentor or career coach (RCPCH offer this to members)
Make use of training through Trust / SAS development fund/ HEE ( training for Specialist Trainees can be accessed too if you ask) eg –
- train the trainer
- negotiating skills
- leadership courses eg https://www.hee.nhs.uk/sites/default/files/documents/East%20midlands%20leadership%20and%20management%20programme%20brochure.pdf
- Educational or clinical supervisor courses
- PGCert medical education