Widening Access to Specialty Training (WAST)

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Positions are now available for doctors to work and train in England. A new 12-month program, combining general practice and psychiatry, could help you develop the skills and competences to apply to the specialty training program upon completion. So what are you hoping to expect?

  • Live in vibrant cities or beautiful rural locations
  • Train in different settings including hospitals or the community
  • Starting salary of over £30,000

What is WAST?

The Widening Access to Specialty Training (WAST) scheme is a 12-month program based in England that will typically involve:

  • Up to 12 months in acute hospital specialities with potentially 4-6 months in psychiatry
  • Two week taster session in a GP practice
  • Taster sessions in a mental health setting if required

It’s ideal for doctors wanting to become a general practitioner or psychiatrist in England, as it’s an opportunity to work for a year in England while receiving regular teaching and clinical exposure that will help to improve the skills and competences required for admission to specialty training through the national selection processes. It is anticipated that doctors completing the scheme are able to better understand how to deliver good quality care in the NHS. Financial relocation support package available for suitably qualified applicants.

Am I eligible for this?

Applicants must:

  • have achieved a primary medical qualification recognized by the General Medical Council
  • be eligible for full registration with, and hold a current licence to practice from, the GMC at intended start date of post.
  • be eligible to work in the UK.
  • Have no more than 24 months’ postgraduate clinical experience in the UK at the time of application.
  • be of good standing and fit to practice medicine safely in accordance with GMC’s  Good Medical Practice domains
  • be familiar with requirements as set out in The Trainee Doctor including the relevant core skills.
  • Hold current valid driving licence or provides an undertaking to provide alternative means of transport to fulfil the requirements of the WAST scheme
  • Not have already successfully completed an F2 year and received a Foundation Programme Certificate of Completion (FPCC)
  • The applicant must not have previously attended the WAST interview more than twice

Finally, make certain that you fulfill the person specification criteria.

How do I apply?

Applicants will be invited into assessment center to be held in Manchester. And moreover, the application process has a deadline and pre-determined dates for appointments. Unlike other NHS jobs at the trust level, this process can not be entirely done from outside the UK.

The application form and instructions can be found here, applying for WAST.

  • Applicants must submit their CV & application form to wast.recruitment@hee.nhs.uk
  • Applicants will be required to participate in a multi-panel interview process, including role players. There will be an emphasis on patient safety.
  • Following the interview, applicants will be given the option to discuss their preferences regarding location, and any other general concerns/queries with an administrator.
  • Further information on what to expect on the day will be provided upon invitation to the assessment center.
  • Applicants will be offered their highest available location preference depending on availability.

If you still need further information or clarification, please go through the applicant’s guide, which covers everything from eligibility, finances, interview, and follow up.

Is it worth it?

If you are willing to dedicate one year of structured training from the beginning of your career in the UK, despite it potentially being in a rural area or on the outskirts of big cities, then definitely look into this. Also, if you have career aspirations to be either a GP or psychiatrist, you should definitely consider this as an option.

Otherwise, if you are more inclined to other specialties then:

As always, good luck!

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