The Joint Negotiating Committee (Juniors) is a forum to discuss contractual issues for Junior Doctors in training. It is expected to meet several times a year. Meeting updates are provided in this section.
JNC (J) Meeting - 22nd October 2009
The committee includes employer representatives from England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland; representatives from the Health Departments of the devolved nations, and the British Medical Association.
Key points which arose during the discussions at the above JNC (J) meeting included the following:
The JDC expressed concerns over the inclusion of EWTD opt-out forms in juniors’ induction packs. NHS Employers can understand why opt-out forms might be included in induction packs as induction packs should give access to a full range of relevant reference documentation from the start of a doctors’ / dentists’ appointment. This is especially important in hospitals where doctors and dentists may work at several different sites in which case it may not be practical to leave a ward to visit the HR department in person. In these circumstances the inclusion of an opt-out form in the induction pack would facilitate those doctors who may wish to work additional hours at a later point in their employment.
We would stress however that the opt-out must remain entirely voluntary. If an opt-out form was to be included in induction packs, employers would need to emphasise that it is not a requirement of the job that doctors / dentists complete the form and that no pressure is put upon them to complete such forms. Employers will be aware that they are at risk of action by the Health and Safety Executive if found to be coercing staff.
Sharing of information with new trainees
The JNC (J) expressed their wish to set a minimum standard for information (including rotas) to be sent to trainees at least six weeks before they are due to start work.
NHS Employers are aware that many employers do not have the necessary information to send to trainees at least 6 weeks before they commence employment. In light of this we would encourage employers to liaise closely with deaneries to enable them to give as much notice as possible to help trainees plan ahead.
Non-standard junior doctor grades
Adverts should clearly state whether posts are recognised for training or not. Employers who are appointing non-standard junior doctor and dentist grades e.g., Trust Doctor, Clinical Fellow, must clearly state on the advert that the post is not recognised for training so doctors and dentists have a clear understanding of the post they are applying for. NHS Employers would also advise employers to avoid using the same terminology for non-standard junior doctor grades as those used for training grades wherever possible to help avoid any confusion.
Involving juniors in the designing of rotas
The involvement of junior doctors and dentists in rota planning carries many benefits, amongst them are the improvement of juniors’ working lives by promoting a good work life balance and this generally helps to make juniors feel more involved. NHS Employers would encourage this involvement wherever possible