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Less Than Full Time Training (LTFT)

Health Education England Wessex offers support to all trainees who, for well-founded individual reasons, wish to be considered for Less than Full-time Training. The intention is to keep doctors within the NHS who might otherwise leave due to an inability to work on a full time basis. LTFT is available to all training grades within HEE Wessex.

All LTFT training of any kind must take place in posts and programmes prospectively approved by the GMC for training purposes. LTFT training is subject to eligibility, the identification of a suitable placement and availability of resources.

The key aims of LTFT training are:

  • To retain doctors within the NHS workforce who are unable to train on a full time basis
  • To promote career development and work/life balance for doctors training within the NHS
  • To ensure continued training in programmes on a time-equivalent (pro rata) basis
  • To maintain a balance in LTFT arrangements with regards to educational needs and those of the service

For more information regarding Less Than Full Time training, please refer to our guidance document (pdf) and the GMC Position Statement (Nov 2017) (pdf)

Applying to Train LTFT

Trainees who wish to be considered for Less Than Full Time Training should complete and return the LTFT application form (word). and submit to

Trainees are encouraged to apply as far as possible in advance of wishing to undertake Less Than Full Time Training, but no later than 16 weeks before the anticipated start date of your LTFT training.

After the LTFT application has been approved a letter confirming the approval will be sent to the trainee. This will also act as the trainees certificate of eligibility throughout their training at the approved percentage.

Changing Percentage

Should a LTFT trainee wish to change their approved training percentage they will need to apply by completing a Change of Percentage form (word) and submitting to for approval. This form must be completed at least 16 weeks before the intended start date of change to allow adequate time for the change to be approved at HEE - Wessex by the Associate Dean and Programme Team and for the employing Trust to make the necessary changes to the rota.

If for any reason a trainee can not give 16 weeks notice then approval will not be given until the Associate Dean has considered the reason and provided consent.  The TPD and Programme Manager will then identify a suitable placement on the programme to accommodate the change which may require the trainee to wait until arrangements can be made with Medical HR and rota Co-ordinators.

Trust Medical HR Contacts

Contacts for medical HR teams at our Trusts can be found here.

Returning to Full Time Training

Trainees should refer to the less than full time guidance document if they are considering returning to full time training.

Emergency Medicine, Paediatrics and Obstetrics & Gynaecology LTFT Pilot

Health Education England (HEE) is developing innovative new approaches to postgraduate medical training to improve morale and provide greater flexibility for junior doctors, based on commitments in the NHS Long Term Plan and Interim People Plan to increase the flexibility of postgraduate medical training.

This includes the provision of more opportunities and wider access to less than full time training (LTFT). A pilot for LTFT training in Emergency Medicine initially went live in 2017, and an evaluation of this pilot reported improvements in trainees work-life balance and improved job satisfaction.

Following this, we are extending this pilot to Paediatrics and Obstetrics and Gynaecology (O&G) trainees, based on the same principals.

To apply complete the less than full time application in the link above ensuring Category 3 is selected.

It is important to note that you must not presume your application will be successful.


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