Maternity and Parental Leave

Ahead of planned parental leave there are a number of actions a GP Doctor in Training (DiT) needs to take in preparation for as well as during the parental leave period and ahead of their return to training, which have been detailed on this page.

The following people need to be informed of the expected dates of leave:

• GP Programme Manager Lucy Wyatt at NHS England (NHSE), Wessex (

• NHS England Patch Office

• Human Resources (HR) Department at the Programme Lead Employer of the (DiT). The required notice is set out in NHS Employers Terms and Conditions.

How will parental leave affect pay and contracts?

The HR Department of the Programme Lead Employer will liaise with the GP (DiT) regarding parental leave pay. GP (DiT) should also notify their future placement that they were planned to rotate to if it will be affected by their parental leave. 

If the employment contract with the current employer is due to end less than 11 weeks before the start of parental leave, it may need to be extended to prevent any impact to statutory leave pay. If any GP doctor in training feels they will be in this situation they should discuss with their Programme Lead Employer and GP Programme Manager at the earliest opportunity. 

Once the GP Programme Manager and the Patch Office have been informed of the dates of parental leave, the information will be shared with their Programme Director and HR Department at their programme lead employer or training practice. It is however still the responsibility of the (DiT) to give their Programme Lead Employer appropriate formal notice of their parental leave according to NHS Employers Terms and Conditions and their contract of employment.

GP doctors in training should liaise with their NHSE Patch Office to add the dates of parental leave to their ePortfolio on Fourteen Fish. Any queries related to the ePortfolio should be emailed to the Patch Office in the first instance.

All GP doctors in training must complete a Form R every 12 months using the TIS Self Service system. This requirement continues during parental leave. The Revalidation and Accreditation Team will contact you to request the form if required.

An Educational Supervisor’s Review (ESR) must be completed every 6 months whole time equivalent during training. This applies to full time and less than full time GP doctors in training.

Ahead of parental leave we encourage all GP (DiTs) to ensure that evidence including all assessments in their ePortfolio are up to date and arrange for their Educational Supervisor to complete an ESR to cover the period in training up to the start of parental leave. An ESR should not usually cover more than 6 calendar months, however the RCGP will allow an ESR to cover a slightly longer period (8 calendar months maximum) where parental leave or less than full time training make a 6 month review impractical.

GP doctors in training in a hospital post, must arrange for a Clinical Supervisors Report to be completed to cover the post up to the start of parental leave, however short this training time is.

During parental leave an ARCP will be planned, if it is due, however this will only need an up-to-date Form R which is recorded on the ARCP certificate as an N2 Outcome.

An out of programme Educational Supervisors Review will not be required during this period.

If you have questions about the ARCP process, Revalidation, or Form R, please contact the Revalidation and Accreditation Team at NHS England, Wessex via the appropriate mailbox listed

Planning and Timing of ARCPs

Detailed information on the planning and timing of ARCPs can be found in the ARCP section. For any questions or queries not covered by the information provided please direct to the NHSE GP Programme team

Annual Leave and Keep In Touch Days

GP (DiTs) should discuss annual leave entitlement with their current and future employers. During parental leave GP (DiT) will accrue annual leave and this accrued leave is usually taken in a block at the end of parental leave. The GP Programme at NHSE Wessex will not support the use of accrued annual leave to work less than full time after parental leave. The annual leave that is accrued while on parental leave does not count towards training time. Training time will recommence from the date a GP (DiT) physically returns to the workplace.

Keep in Touch (KIT) days allow a GP (DiT) to work up to 10 days during parental leave under their contract of employment without affecting SMP/MA entitlement. They can include training days and other activities that allow the employee to keep in touch with the workplace. If the employer offers this scheme a GP (DiT) may be paid their basic pay for these days (less maternity pay) with prior agreement from the Programme Lead Employer. NHSE do not provide funding for KIT days. GP (DiT) will also need to ensure they have appropriate medical indemnity if they are seeing patients.  KIT days should be taken before accrued annual leave commences as GP doctors in training cannot claim for payment when they are already being paid for leave

GMC registration and Medical Indemnity

GP Doctors in Training must maintain their GMC registration with a licence to practise whilst on parental leave.

GP Doctors in Training must ensure that they have the appropriate level of medical indemnity including the enhanced cover required if working in General Practice in place for their return to work.

For more information please access the Medical Indemnity webpage

GP Doctors in Training must provide the required notice of their intended return to training dates to their Programme Lead Employer, NHSE GP Programme Team (, and NHSE Patch Office. They should also use this opportunity to advise of any changes to their circumstances that may affect the planning of their return to training placements. The Patch office and GP Programme team do their best to plan a rotation similar to the one that was allocated prior to parental leave if appropriate. Due to service need and GP practice capacity, it may be necessary to change the placements. The GP (DiT) will be kept informed of their rotations with at least 12 weeks’ notice as required by the Code of Practice. Any queries or concerns about placements, should be directed to the Programme Director or NHSE GP Programme Manager

We encourage all GP Doctors in training to promptly attend to communications to ensure that all parental leave and return to training arrangements are in place and to also keep us updated with any changes to their plans throughout their pregnancy and parental leave.

GP Doctors in Training that wish to return to training Less Than Full Time should firstly review the LTFT guidance as well as LTFT Training for GP Doctors in Training . DiTs should apply via the online MS Form which is submitted directly to the LTFT team to consider the applicants eligibility.

It should be noted that the required period of notice for a new LTFT application or change of percentage is 16 weeks before the start of the standard rotation dates. In General Practice training these are August and February every year.

Supported Return to Training (SuppoRTT): GP (DiT) should access the available information on Supported Return to Training and must meet with their Educational Supervisor or Training Programme Director approximately 12 weeks before their intended return date, to complete a pre return to training form    

Other Resources

We encourage all GP (DiT) to review the information on maternity, paternity and adoption as well as the General Maternity Guidance for rotational Junior Doctors in Training (October 2022) which is available on the NHS Employers website.