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Clinical Attachments

Cardiff & Vale UHB are pleased to offer clinical attachment placements at all CAV UHB sites. A clinical attachment is a short term unpaid placement for a qualified doctor who would like some experience of the NHS. It allows you to gain an overview of medical processes and systems in the NHS, by observing a consultant in a relevant speciality at work. During the attachment, you are not given any responsibility and are not able to make clinical decisions or give clinical advice. This is an observer role only and will not have direct patient contact.

In accordance with Home Office recommendations, International attachments are limited to a maximum of 6 weeks.

Applying for a Clinical Attachment

If you wish to apply for a clinical attachment at Cardiff & Vale UHB you will first need to find a Consultant Supervisor who will be willing to supervise and support you whilst at Cardiff & Vale UHB. Following this either you or your Clinical Supervisor may apply for a clinical attachment.


Who is eligible?

Candidates for medical observership placements must be qualified and registered in their home country. UK professional registration is not required. No hands-on activities are allowed.

In order to apply for observership programmes candidates will complete an application form and provide the following documentation:

  1. Passport

  2. National ID or Driving Licence (and translation)

  3. Visa (if Non-EU)

  4. Proof of Qualification and Professional Registration (and translation)

  5. DBS / Certificate of Good Standing (Police Issued) check from home country (and translation)

  6. Completed Fitness to practice and criminal investigations declaration

  7. Two proofs of address

  8. Evidence of immunity to:

    • Hepatitis B (antibodies)

    • Measles and Rubella or evidence of having had two MMR vaccinations

    • BCG vaccination or evidence of immunity to tuberculosis (TB)

    • Immunity to chicken pox.

  9. Occupational Health Clearance (You will be required to undertake a Medical Occupational Health Screening prior to commencement of your placement and must achieve a Clear status before you will be granted a clinical attachment, If you have a medical condition for which adjustments are required to enable you to carry out your placement, you must inform the Medical Workforce Department in advance of your placement.)

  10. Personal information form

  11. Two professional reference letters


Accommodation may be booked at University Hospital of Wales & University Hospital Llandough sites, subject to availability. Please note that there is a charge for this and you will be invoiced for this directly by the accommodation department.

Guidelines for applicants

  1. Observers are not authorised by CAV UHB to provide services of any kind either in an employed or honorary capacity and observers are not entitled to remuneration or expenses.
  2. While on clinical attachment, observers are not permitted under any circumstances to:
    • prescribe
    • order diagnostic tests or radiological examinations
    • take specimens
    • initiate, advise, order or stop the treatment of patients
    • undertake clinical procedures
    • teach clinical procedures
    • take any part in obtaining or witnessing the signature by or on behalf of a patient on a form of consent to treatment
    • assist with laboratory work
  3. Observers under strict supervision by the designated clinical supervisor can observe in theatre, take a clinical history under supervision, contribute to discussion on diagnosis with the team post treatment (but not diagnose or advise treatment).
  4. It is the observer’s responsibility and that of the designated supervisor to ensure that the observer is identified to the patient and the observer’s status is obtained. In order to improve security all observers are required to wear a photo identification badge when in all hospital premises.
  5. The observer must not question or examine a patient.
  6. All attendance in hospital clinical areas must be supervised. Observers are not normally permitted to visit intensive therapy units or visit areas other than their base department without the express permission of the head of department or supervising consultant.
  7. While on attachment observers are subject to the same checks and obligations as CAV UHB staff with respect to the following:
    • Immigration status
    • Occupational Health requirements
    • Criminal Records
    • Protection of Children
    • Certification under the Ionising Radiation Regulations
  8. Observers are required at all times to behave in accordance with departmental policies and protocols, and the policies and procedures established by CAV UHB. In particular — Health and Safety regulations; confidentiality of patient information; alcohol at work; harassment policy; equal opportunities; no smoking policy; standards of business conduct. Copies of these policies are available for inspection in CAV UHB’s website or Directorate Offices Intranet.
  9. The clinical attachment may be withdrawn at any time if the observers is found to be in breach of any CAV UHB policies, procedures or the terms of this agreement. It may also be withdrawn for any other reason at the discretion of the Medical Director and or Medical Workforce Department, Directorate Department
  10. During the clinical attachment, observers are not and must not present themselves as an employee of CAV UHB.
  11. The observer accepts that CAV UHB shall not incur any legal liability upon termination of this appointment or offer any indemnity for NHS work.
  12. Observers must maintain a minimum of attendance.
  13. CAV UHB is responsible for the health and safety of each observer whilst on site on CAV UHB premises during the programme; provided that each observer complies with all Trust requirements.
  14. CAV UHB accepts no responsibility for damage to or loss of observers’ personal property.



Find Out More & Apply for a Clinical Attachment

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