F2 Swaps

Wessex F1 doctors who have been appointed to a two-year training programme can, if they wish, apply to change their allocated F2 rotation by: 

  • Swapping a single F2 post (at the same site) 
  • Swapping a full F2 rotation (at the same site) 
  • Moving into a vacant F2 rotation (at the same site) 

Swaps between different sites are no longer permitted unless in exceptional circumstances (see below).

The term ‘site’ refers to the location of the foundation doctors training programme regardless of their employing organisation. Wessex training sites are Basingstoke, Bournemouth, Dorchester, Isle of Wight, Jersey, Poole, Portsmouth, Salisbury, Southampton and Winchester. This policy does not apply to foundation doctors in Kassel. 

  1. To be fair to all, there is a strict timeline and late applications will not be considered under any circumstances.  
  1. For an application to be considered, a foundation doctor must be on track to successfully complete F1 training in the opinion of their Foundation Programme Director (FPD).  
  1. It is only possible to swap F2 posts or rotations as part of the formal Foundation School process. Private swaps and swaps arranged outside of the application window are not permitted.  
  1. A balanced 2-year training programme must contain the following elements: 
  • A community placement in either F1 or F2. 
  • A specialty must not be repeated across F1 and F2 except for medicine or surgery (where it is a different sub-specialty). For example, a foundation doctor cannot do paediatrics in F1 and F2.  
  • Medical and surgical sub-specialties cannot be repeated across F1 and F2. For example, a foundation doctor could do posts in cardiology and geriatrics, but not two cardiology posts. 
  1. Swaps between Foundation Schools are not possible via this swap process. A separate Inter-Foundation School Transfer (IFST) process governs moves between Foundation Schools. Details of the IFST criteria, process and the application window can be found on the UKFPO website: https://foundationprogramme.nhs.uk/faqs/stand-alone-faqs-ifst/  
  1. Foundation doctors in the following groups cannot apply to swap posts or rotations via this process: 
  • Specialised Foundation Programme 
  • Foundation Priority Programme   
  • Out of programme (statutory leave or approved time out of training) 
  • Military Foundation doctors 
  1. In the event of two or more doctors applying to move into the same post or rotation, the combined SJT/EPM recruitment application score will be used for ranking, with the highest scorer being successful.  
  1. All applications will be considered by a local panel to ensure that the swap does not disadvantage any foundation doctor or result in an unbalanced rotation. 

Post and rotation swaps at the same site 

  • A list of any vacant F2 posts and rotations will be circulated to F1 doctors who are due to undertake F2 year at that site. Note that not all sites will have vacant F2 rotations.  
  • Eligible foundation doctors can apply to swap individual F2 placements with another doctor, swap a whole 12-month F2 rotation with another doctor or move into a vacant F2 rotation. In the case of vacant rotations, foundation doctors can only apply to move into the entire vacant rotation not just one or two of the individual posts.  
  • All applicants must complete an application form. Where foundation doctors wish to swap either a single placement or a whole rotation, both applicants must complete a form.  
  • Each training site will convene a panel to assess applications after which applicants will be notified of the outcome. 
  • Foundation programme coordinators (FPC) will inform the foundation school of post or rotation changes and any remaining vacant F2 rotations at the end of the local process. 

Exceptional circumstances  

Applications which do not adhere to this policy will only be considered in cases where exceptional circumstances can be demonstrated. This is usually limited to health-related issues. Formal occupational health advice is taken into consideration by the Head of Wessex Foundation School before making any changes to allocations on a case-by-case basis.  


Swaps or moves at same training siteDates Responsible  
List of vacant F2 rotations circulated to eligible F1s. Email to eligible F1 doctors to inform swap applications open (attaching this policy and application form). By 02 January 2025FPC/FPD  
Application window F1 doctors to apply for swap or move to vacant F2 posts or rotations at same site. Application for to be submitted to local FPC.  07 January 2025 to 
13 February 2025  
F1 doctors  
Local panel reviews applications. Applicants informed of outcome. FPC informs Foundation school of any rotation changes and remaining F2 vacancies.   By 03 March 2025 FPC/FPD  

Updated March 2024