What are we doing to support doctors?

Videos set a cookie when played, see our cookie policy.


We continue to collaborate with the BMA, the wider profession, four UK governments and national partners to improve the consistency of how all doctors can register safety concerns about working in under-resourced environments.  In particular:

  • We’re piloting a new Professional behaviours and patient safety training programme to help equip doctors with the skills and confidence to tackle unprofessional behaviours. Our outreach teams will initially deliver the training to doctors working on the frontline at a number of sites across the UK during 2019. 
  • In England, together with NHS Improvement, the Academy of Medical Royal Colleges (AoMRC), the British Medical Association (BMA), the Care Quality Commission (CQC), Health Education England (HEE) and NHS Employers, we have agreed a joint approach to improving exception reporting. This will help to standardise the process, so we can compare data on a national level, and it will give doctors more confidence to exception report. 
  • We’re working with the guardians of safe working in England to make sure they can perform the role they have been asked to take on, and we’re doing more to help doctors better understand how the guardians can support them.
  • Linked to this, we are extending our partnership with the National Freedom to Speak Up (F2SU) Guardian and the network of F2SU guardians across England. This includes on the ground support for guardians and sharing information on risks to the profession and patients across England.
  • Along with seven other regulators, we have also launched the Emerging Concerns Protocol, which is designed to make sure information is shared in a timely, effective and coordinated way across the health system in England. It provides a clear mechanism for organisations to raise concerns and arrange meetings where they can be discussed.
  • In Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland we’re already working closely with our local partners, and the BMA in particular, to find ways to improve the consistency of rota monitoring, and better support doctors in training. 
  • We know from our work on the frontline, that many Specialty and Associate Specialist (SAS) doctors do not feel recognised or have a voice in the system. We are carrying out a feasibility study to explore how we can collect the views of these doctors, and provide them with an opportunity to safely and formally tell us about their experiences of working in healthcare environments across the UK.