First Month In UK as Junior Doctor

It’s been one month since I joined Leicester Royal Infirmary. Here’s a quick recap of what I’ve done in last one month. Hope it will help fellow doctors who will come to UK in near future.

1) Accommodation:

it’s the first thing to sort out. Before coming to UK, I emailed hospital HR regarding this. They connected me with hospital accommodation team & booked a shared apartment for me. Usually it costs 450-550 pound/month for a 2-3 person shared apartment (definitely varies from trust to trust) including all necessary furniture & cooking appliances, monthly bills, council tax,WIFI & cleaning services.

2)Collection of BRP:

In TIER-2 visa package, there will be a document with information where and when to collect your BRP. You must collect your BRP within 10 days of arriving in UK or before your vignette expires. Otherwise, you may be subject to a financial penalty or a reduction or cancellation of your leave. If BRP doesn’t arrive within 10 working days, need to mail home office ASAP.

3)Opening Bank Account:

HSBC UK is preferred as they required less documents. Only need a letter from hospital HR mentioning total yearly salary. Bank staffs will take care of the rest. Don’t forget to get a credit and debit card & start binge shopping in Amazon Prime.

4) Appointment with Occupational health Dept:

It’s mandatory to get clearance from occupational health department to start working. It’s better to take an appointment for occupational health checkup via HR before reaching UK. Otherwise it might take a while to get an appointment and you have to sit idle in the meantime. Usually it takes 48hrs to get test results. Sometimes it might get delayed. In my case, It took 7 days.

5)Meet HR contact Person:

Once cleared by occupational health dept, you need to meet HR contact person. (S)He will provide a form to fill up with all required information including bank account information & will fix a date to start.

6) Induction Day:

On first day, you need to go to administrative office of your department. They will provide all necessary information to start working including ID badge to access restricted hospital area, ID-Passward to access hospital IT system, rota, shadowing, annual leave, study leave, trust guidelines, CPD etc. They will also provide a list of mandatory trainings usually done in online to complete. It’s expected to finish all mandatory trainings with 2-4 weeks.

7) Register with GP:

It’s important to get registered with a GP surgery. Find a suitable GP surgery nearby and get registered. It won’t cost any money as you’ve already paid your health surcharge. After that you will get a message to come to GP clinic for first appointment.

8)Provisional Driving License:

It’s necessary to get a provisional driving license to learn driving. Online application is available on DVLA website and it will cost 34 GBP. Once online application is submitted they will sent a mail with a form. It needs to be filled up with required information and to be returned with a passport size photo attested by someone with a full UK driving license and a document to prove your identity(Passport/BRP)

9)Indemnity insurance:

All doctors are usually covered by NHS indemnity insurance within hospital. In addition to this, it is advised to have personal indemnity insurance with MPS/MDU. They will support and advise you in any complaints or legal matters that arise from your work. They also insure you against work outside of the hospital. Annual insurance fee varies according to the level you’re working at. It cost 79 GBP/year for junior trust grade doctor/SHO.

10) BMA membership:

It’s optional. The membership includes a whole array of benefits including a monthly subscription to BMA, online library, book loan, BMJ learning & e-portfolio etc. For doctors newly started working in UK, the annual membership fee is 20GBP/month.

11) Book Meeting with supervisor:

During induction, you will be given name and contact address for your supervisor. Book a meeting with your supervisor to discuss you goals & future career plan.

12) E-portfolio:

It’s an organized system to keep track of continuous professional development including CBD, Mini-CEx, DOPs etc. Trust may provide you one or you need to pay to a get one. It’s better to discuss with trust HR about their policy.

13)OpenAthens account:

Need to contact hospital library to get an openathens account. It will provide access to uptodate, Dynamed, E-LFH, BNF etc.

14) Buying Instrument:

Don’t forget to buy necessary instrument e.g. stethoscope, pen torch, hammer etc.

15)Book ALS course:

To get a suitable date for ALS is tricky. Keep searching for a feasible one and book it ASAP. You need to pay course fee first. Once you clear the exam, trust will reimburse the course fee. Nice way to get some extra money from trust 

16)Necessary Apps: 

Navigation: Google Map, Moveit,Citymapper
Hospital related: Induction, BNF
Accommodation: Zoopla, Right move
Food Delivery: Just Eat, Deliveroo

17) Mobile SIM:

There’s several operators in UK. I’ve been using Giffgaff for several months. They provide unlimited calls & 4G net for 20 GBP/month. To call in Bangladesh, it’s better to buy ‘viber out call’ service. To use this service, you need to have net connection but the recipients don’t need to be online to receive the call. It costs 3GBP/100 min.

Dr. Qamar Uddin Hejazi

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