Health Education England (HEE) has acted to address junior doctors' concerns about their ability to make protected disclosures without fear of detriment.
This was one of the British Medical Association's (BMA) key non-contractual concerns in the negotiations around the new contract. Although legislation protects those making disclosures against their employer, there was some concern that this did not offer adequate protection, as HEE still held significant influence over a trainee's career, despite not being an employer.
HEE has agreed with the BMA, NHS Employers and the Department of Health that, in order to address this potential barrier to junior doctors raising concerns about patient safety, HEE will place into its contracts with local employers a provision that protects junior doctors making disclosures.
The intention is that this new right will be backdated to 3 August 2016 to align with the start date of new junior doctors' contract offered from that date. Further information and a copy of a letter to the BMA, signed jointly by Professor Wendy Reid, HEE medical director, and Danny Mortimer, chief executive at NHS Employers can be found on the HEE website