The Lead Employer for General Practice trainees in the east of England is St Helens and Knowsley Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust. GP trainees will be employed for the duration of their General Practice training by St Helens and Knowsley Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust. This will give trainees consistent terms and conditions for their employment, although trainees will need to comply with the work place policies in each post that they work.

The Lead Employer will handle any employment issues and provide a contract of employment to cover the duration of GP training. Each trainee will receive an offer of employment from the Trust before starting their first post and  should receive a contract of employment within eight weeks of their start date. All absences including sick leave, maternity leave etc must be reported to St Helens and Knowsley Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust as their employer.   This is a trainees' responsibility as otherwise it may lead to them being paid incorrectly.

The offer of employment is separate from the allocation of a place on a training programme which they will receive from HEE. The contract of employment sets out the main terms and conditions of service including pay, annual leave, notice periods and the details of the out of hours work that you will be expected to carry out.

St Helens and Knowsley NHS Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust will contact trainees in regard to completing pre-employment checks, occupational health information, the Disclosure & Barring Service (previously CRB), relevant commencement of employment forms, bank details and immigration status.

Shared Services Website & Contact Information

As your employer St Helens and Knowsley Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust want to ensure you can access all of the information you need and keep in touch with the developments and the benefits open to you as an employee. In order to access our policies and processes please visit:

Host Trusts and GP practices can now access rotation and management information via the ESR system (including confirmation that pre-employment checks are complete, any health restrictions, attendance management issues etc).

If you require any further information or clarification of any of the Lead Employer policies and processes please direct any queries to

Contact Information 

General Queries -

Payroll -

Business Mileage & Expenses -

Pensions -


Professional Indemnity Insurance


The Lead Employer has negotiated a block indemnity solution for all GP speciality trainees on GPST training programmes within the East of England with The Medical Defence Union (MDU) commencing on 1st August 2018.  As you will be aware as a Specialist GP Trainee you are required to hold appropriate medical indemnity for clinical activities you undertake during your General Practice Placement.  This is mandatory and you will not be able to register on the Medical Performers List or work in Primary Care without it.

In line with the above the Lead Employer will therefore automatically provide you with Medical Indemnity through the above Block Indemnity Contract with the MDU from 1st August 2018.  You will receive confirmation of your membership of the MDU shortly.  You do not need to contact the MDU directly to put this indemnity solution in place nor are you required to fund this arrangement.  The MDU will collect the full costs of membership directly from Health Education England.  Given this you should not take out your own individual indemnity.

If you are currently an individual member of the MDU in your own right and have paid a subscription you will receive a refund for any period beyond 1st August 2018.  The MDU will contact you directly to arrange this.

It is your own personal and professional obligation to ensure that you have appropriate medical indemnity in place before you commence your General Practice Placement.  If you have not heard from the MDU within 7 days of the start of your GP Practice placement confirming you have the required indemnity please email directly and copy in .

Should your circumstances change e.g. going Less Than Full Time Training, Out of Programme, Resign, Transfer Deanery or go on Maternity/Paternity Leave you must ensure that you email the above contacts and provide them with the relevant information.

Trainees may also opt to take out an additional membership benefit not included in the lead employer’s scheme.  The Medical Defence Union will provide you with the option to ‘opt in’ to receive this benefit within its communication to you.   

Please note that NHS Resolution (formally the Clinical Negligence Scheme for Trusts - CNST) provides indemnity to NHS bodies for clinical negligence claims.  The NHS Litigation Authority administers this process.  Therefore Doctors working for NHS bodies or organisations providing services to NHS patients are indemnified for their NHS work through their employing organisation.  This is automatically provided for you and covers your training when you are working in an NHS Organisation Placement e.g. a Hospital.

If you have any questions relating to your indemnity cover please do not hesitate to contact the lead in the first instance at .

Pre August 2013 or Opt out Trainees

If a Trainee began their training prior to August 2013 or has opted out of the MDDUS cover. it is their responsibility to source appropriate cover. The Trainee will be reimbursed for this cover if they send evidence to 

Disclosure and Barring Service

A new DBS check will be required at the start of your training programme.  This is required for pre-employment check purposes and for your application for the National Performers List.

From June 2013 changes to the CRB system were introduced. The details can be found at here.

Part of the new system is the ability for an individual to subscribe to the DBS update system. This means that a doctor on a longer training programme can apply once in their training programme and the check will be portable.

The new service has significant benefit for the employee. The responsibility for paying the cost of the DBS check now lies with the employee. The Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) update service lets trainees keep their DBS certificates up to date online and allows employers to check a certificate online. There is no reimbursement for the fee paid for the update service.

National Medical Performers List
Important update for GP registrars due to join the National Medical Performers List from August 2017


Please see the attached guidance (click on PDF image) from NHS England and Health Education England (HEE) for GP registrars who are due to join the National Medical Performer List from August 2017.

Trainees commencing their registrar placements between August 2017 and January 2018 (inclusive) will not need to complete and submit an application form.

  • - Health Education England (HEE) will provide NHS England with details of their latest intake of GP registrars for inclusion on the performers list.
  • - The NHS England RO will approve the list and then advise PCSE which GP registrars will need to be added to the list.
  • - PCSE will then notify each trainee of their inclusion by email.  The email will provide confirmation of entry on to the NPL whether or not the registrar appears on the electronic NPL.
  • - Please note that PCSE have a three month grace period, from the trainee’s GP placement start date, in which to contact the trainee to confirm inclusion to the performers list. 

If you do not receive your confirmation email, please contact the HEE in the first instance to confirm that the correct contact information has been passed onto NHS England and PCSE. 

Please note HEE cannot confirm inclusion on the list – HEE can only confirm that the correct details have been passed across to NHS England.  Final confirmation will come from PCSE.

If you have any queries please contact:

While this notice is targeted to our new  August 2017 GP cohort, please note that this process has been in place since August 2016.  Therefore, all GP registrars who commenced their programmes from August 2016 onwards will have been subject to this process.
Please also Note that it is the policy of NHS England that all trainees must subscribe to the DBS Update Service.
More can be found here

Change of Status - GP Registrar to qualified GP

Information to newly qualified GPs can be found here 

Honorary Contracts

Only electronic forms will be accepted. 

The main contract of employment is issued to the trainee by St Helens and Knowsley Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust. This will contain information on annual leave and study leave entitlement, salary, incremental date, HR policies etc.

Honorary Contract -

It is the responsibility of the practice to arrange for the honorary contract to be completed with the trainee.  This must be returned to HEE no later than one month after the placement starts. If you are unsure of your GP Trainees placement dates, please contact your local Medical Education Centre.   If you have any queries relating to annual leave entitlement please contact the Lead Employer.

It is the responsibility of the practice to arrange for the honorary contract to be completed with the trainee.  This consists of three parts; the first being the secondment to the practice; the second and third are the educational and trainer’s agreements. This must be returned to HEE no later than one month after the placement starts. If you are unsure of your GP Trainees placement dates, please contact your Medical Education Centre.

Please be advised that we require one honorary contract per placement.  For example, if a trainee has a 4 month innovative placement followed by a 4 month full time placement, we will require one contract per placement. 

We require one honorary contract per training year.  For example, if a trainee has a 12 month post, 6 months in ST2 and 6 months in ST3.  We will require one contract for the first 6 months placement and then another contract for the second 6 month placement.

We require one honorary contract per 12 month period.  For example, for an 18 month placement, we will require an honorary contract for the first 12 months of the placement and then a second contract for the remaining 6 months, to be received by the office on or after the placement start date.

Should a trainee be granted an extension of training with the same practice then we will NOT require a further honorary contract.  We will just require an email informing us of the extension, detailing the placement dates and the advised WTE percentage.  Please note that this only applies to ST3 trainees who have received an extension past the set 3 years of training.

If your trainee is on an Innovative Post (ITP), this is classed as a full time GP post at 100% and the trainers grant will be paid at this rate to the practice. They are not working less than full time. Please ensure this is reflected on the honorary contract.

Please note that if your trainee is working less than full time (LTFT), please ensure that they have received approval from HEE.  If your trainee does not have LTFT approval then the training grant will not be paid.   For further information on LTFT please visit their webpage or contact the LTFT team at

A template Honorary Contract can be found here.

If the link does not work, this is due to your version of Adobe.  To solve this - Right click on the link and 'Save Link As' and save in your folders. You will then need to open the file from the folder that you saved it in.

Please ensure that you save the form locally and open the original electronic claim form in Adobe Acrobat or Adobe Reader (not in a web browser or in PDF Previewer as the digital ID field will be disabled).  You will need to set up a digital ID, however, this set-up process only needs to be completed once.  If you have any queries or require assistance with setting up a digital ID please do not hesitate to contact the 

Step by step guidance for setting up a Digital ID can be found here:

Digital ID set up guide - Click Here

If required, Adobe Reader is available to download for free here:

Download Adobe Acrobat Reader Free - Click Here

Essential guidance for MAC users can be found here:

Electronic form guidance for MAC users - Click Here we strongly recommend MAC users follow this guidance to ensure the form has opened with the correct software prior to completion.

Trainers Grant -
The trainers grant will be paid directly to the practice from HEE. Once you have returned the Honorary Contract, this will be authorised. The reason for this is to ensure the trainee is placed with an approved trainer and practice. We also need to ensure the placement dates are correct and match our records.

We now pay the trainers grant in full for placements up to 12 months. For example, if you have a trainee for a six month period, you will receive the full six months grant in one payment.

Invoice/Payment -

You will receive an e-mail from HEE which confirms authorisation of the honorary contract and to submit your invoice (template will be provided on the e-mail) to SBS Wakefield. The payment will be made via BACS directly into the practice bank account.

Please submit your invoice to SBS Wakefield as soon as you receive authorisation from HEE. We will no longer be chasing you to submit an invoice; therefore this could result in you missing out on these allowances.  

Please note that these invoices MUST be received within the correct financial year in order for them to processed and paid.

Trainees may of course leave a placement in general practice early for a variety of reasons. HEE will make the full payment for the stated period as a benefit to practices’ cash flow. If for whatever reason the trainee is removed we would expect outstanding monies to be repaid to HEE promptly.

Occupational Health Referrals

It is important to involve a trainee's employer in any occupational health referral so that appropriate information can be shared by the trainees employer where necessary with placement providers and HEE. St Helens and Knowsley Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust as a lead employer have generally not received information where TPDs have referred to local providers. Equally The GP school view is that TPDs have experienced inconsistent levels of understanding and consequently advice from occupational health providers.

Therefore this new system should simplify the arrangements for TPDs when seeking occupational health advice. Referrals will be assessed by St Helens and Knowsley Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust's occupational health department and appointments arranged at one of four participating departments around the East of England. This should minimise inconvenience for trainees while concentrating experience amongst a smaller group of occupational health physicians. The new arrangements should promote greater expertise and consistency.

Please therefore do NOT make any occupational health referrals to your local Trust from now onwards, instead contact St Helens and Knowsley Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust via the details below. Should any further local occupational health referrals be made they will no longer be funded.    

Karen Brayley, Head of Health, Work and Well-Being

01514 301985 –

Study Leave

All information on GP Study Leave can be found here.