Wessex Chief Residents

The role of Wessex Chief Resident is a new and increasingly important post for Registrars in Hospital Trusts in Wessex. This clinical leadership programme gives senior trainees (ST4 and above) protected time in leadership and management roles within their host organisation.

Chief Residents function as a bridge between the board and the junior doctor body, and are supported to lead on projects around Service Redesign and Quality Improvement, Education, and Workforce Transformation.

Trainees are released from their clinical roles for a minimum of 40% of their working week, and are supported in their management and leadership activity, at a high level within their trust.

The time dedicated to fulfilling the role of Chief Resident can be taken as Out Of Programme Experience (OOPE), or, with prior approval from the relevant college, as Out of Programme Training, with no requirement to extend their overall training.

For further insight into the role of Wessex Chief Resident, please read the article Covid-19: a chief resident’s experience as the voice of junior doctor leadership.

Support and development

HEE Wessex supports a local network of Chief Residents. The facility to share good practice and discuss challenges/successes has been highly-valued by previous cohorts.

To fulfil their role, Chief Residents also receive high-level mentoring and support within the trust, and benefit from a personal development programme.

The bespoke, high-quality development programme was commissioned from the highly-respected Faculty of Medical Leadership and Management (FMLM). FMLM co-designed and delivered a similar programme for the Royal College of Physicians in London. FMLM typically include free membership in their offer. 

How to apply

Posts are available in nearly all trusts in Wessex, and are appointed via a Deanery-run recruitment/interview process. This takes place in January to February each year. This enables roles to begin from the autumn rotation (though specialties rotating at different stages can also be accommodated).

Trainees interested in applying for the Wessex Chief Resident Scheme should discuss their intentions with their educational supervisor (ES) and training programme director (TPD). Approval for OOPE must be granted from the TPD before a written application form is submitted (bearing the signature of their ES and TPD).

Applications from trainees in non-physician specialties are welcomed. This approach was pioneered in Wessex, where previous years have seen the appointment of Registrars in similar leadership/management programmes.

Wessex is committed to this approach so that every type of hospital trust (supporting specialties as varied as orthopaedic surgery, anaesthetics, rehabilitation medicine, emergency medicine, and psychiatry) can benefit from the programme.

Successful applicants are matched to trusts in Wessex, in a competitive process that takes into account training requirements, preferences and interview scores.


Contact us

For further information, please discuss this opportunity with the Chief Resident in your trust, or contact Dr Phil Rushton, Associate Dean at Philip.rushton@hee.nhs.uk