How workforce transformation boosted junior doctor morale


How Brighton and Sussex University Hospital NHS Trust transformed their workforce to address low morale in junior doctors.


There was increasing service demand in a tertiary major trauma centre at the trust, with no significant increase in trainee workforce, which was negatively impacting the experience of junior doctors. 


To improve trainee experience, boost morale, and to protect clinical and training time for doctors, the team introduced clinical assistants to the department, as one of a number of interventions.

The project was led by an academic FY2 management and leadership trainee, with support from FY1 trainees, the director of medical education, the Directorate Management team, the Practice Development team, and the trust Workforce Transformation team.

Five healthcare assistants (HCAs) received an intensive programme of additional clinical skills training and assessment. They were then seconded as Band 3 clinical assistants (CAs) to work with the 12 FY1 trainees.

The results

There have been notable improvements in the educational experience of trainees as well as in their working lives and morale. The trust has also noticed a series of other improvements including:

  • financial savings
  • career development opportunities created for HCAs and CAs
  • patient safety benefits as CAs provide continuity between FY1 shifts and rotations, and enhance timeliness, continuity and quality of patient care

This is an example of how workforce transformation created new roles leading to improved training experience for junior doctors, financial savings from non-compliant rotas and better patient care.

Clinical assistant project PDF, 1.3 MB

Outlines the project in more detail, looking at the steps taken by the trust to boost junior doctor morale through workforce transformation.

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