Welcome to our dedicated area for everything COVID-19 related.

We know that many of you have questions and concerns. We will do our best to keep you informed as things develop, but for the most up-to-date clinical advice and guidance, please continue to check NHS EnglandPublic Health WalesDepartment of Health (Northern Ireland), and information from the Scottish government.

We will aim update these pages with new information when they come available.

Please do contact us if you have any questions, that are not answered on these pages. You can email us at [email protected]

Resources

As we are all aware, these are uncertain, difficult times with no real assurances about the future. It is affecting every aspect of our lives, with challenging times at home; restrictions in our activities; impacts on our studies and placements; and significantly increased stress and worry at work not only for our patients but also for families and for ourselves. 

Some top tips that are regularly discussed are:

  • Keep connected to family and friends via phone or video.
  • Make sure that your news comes from trusted sources and consider a break from social media if it is making you feel more anxious.
  • Above all, make sure you look after yourselves – sleep, rest and take time to enjoy things where you can. You may be working longer hours, or in an unfamiliar environment, or getting used to new ways of learning online, and it is important that you recuperate in order to be able to provide the most impact and support when you are at work or study.

You will find some helpful resources below, however, these are being developed all the time, so if you have anything new you would like to add, please email us at  [email protected]


RCP's mental health and wellbeing resource

This online resource aims to shine a spotlight on the mental health and wellbeing of physicians by opening up the conversation about mental health issues and their impact. 

This  mental health and wellbeing resource  has been created to help you recognise the warning signs in yourself and others, as well as know about the steps you can take to stay well and seek the right support when you need it. It also shines a spotlight on what the RCP is doing to influence and improve the healthcare system in which we work.

You can access this resource here .


Health Education England

Click here for more information https://www.e-lfh.org.uk/programmes/coronavirus/


NHS Employers

Support available for NHS Staff:  https://www.nhsemployers.org/covid19/health-safety-and-wellbeing/support-available-for-nhs-staff

National discounts for NHS workers:  https://www.nhsemployers.org/news/2020/05/national-discounts-for-nhs-workers

Free access to wellbeing apps for all NHS staff:  https://www.nhsemployers.org/news/2020/03/free-access-to-wellbeing-apps-for-all-nhs-staff

 

We are pleased to announce plans to support graduate student PAs affected by the May national exam cancellations in joining the NHS workforce during these special circumstances.  We know that for those affected it has meant a delay to qualifying and entering the workforce and we have been working closely with stakeholders, including  Health Education England to see how we can support you.

We have established a COVID-19 special temporary register for graduate student PAs who have completed their university programmes, but have yet to pass the PA national exam and have prepared model role descriptions for both student PAs and graduate student PAs to support their entry into the workforce.

Provisions for graduate PA students - Assistant Practitioner (AP) role (Band 5 AfC)

It has been agreed that graduate student PAs who have completed exit examinations, but have either not yet undertaken or are waiting to re-take their PA national examinations, may be considered for an assistant practitioner role - AfC band 5. 

This role will be offered on a fixed term contract basis to support the NHS workforce during this challenging time and will be subject to a very defined job description and scope of practice, found below.

Graduate student PAs interested in this role will be asked to fill out an expression of interest form, if you are interested and would like a copy of this form please email [email protected] and return it to us. We will then liaise with NHS Employers who will match suitable candidates with appropriate employment opportunities. Those graduate PA students who are employed in this role will be placed on a COVID-19 temporary tracking register, which will be held and managed by the FPA.

Provisions for student PAs

In addition to the above, we are aware that many student PAs who are close to completing their training are also keen to assist in any way that they can.  As such, the role of Physician Associate Support Student (PASS) has been created.

This AfC band 4 role is designed for PA students who are in their second year of study on a recognised PA course in the UK. These students will not have yet completed their exit examinations or the PA national examination. 

This role is being overseen by the various Health Education Institutes (HEI) in combination with the NHS Trusts.  It is important to note that some HEIs may already have systems in place enabling students to volunteer or be employed in some other capacity.  HEIs are not limited to the role outlined above, it is for each HEI to determine which mechanisms they use to support their students.  Whilst the job description can be found below, those students interested in volunteering in a PASS role will need to contact their respective HEI for further information on how to apply.

We appreciate and understand that these are uncertain times and that many of you are keen to offer your assistance to the NHS wherever and however possible. Whilst the choice to offer and employ PA students in these roles will of course be at employers' discretion, we believe that these provisions will enable many to do just that. 

If you have any further questions or would like a copy of the expression of interest form, please contact us at [email protected]

Obianuju Nwokolo PA-R, Aberdeen

Obianuju Nwokolo PA-R, Aberdeen I had just completed my 6 months internship in acute/emergency medicine and moved in to general practice at the beginning of March just before the lock... more

Amanda Prince PA-R, Wirral

Amanda PA-R, Wirral I am a PA working in Primary Care. I have started my PA career working across 2 GP primary care hubs dealing with suspected COVID-19 Patients. The patients have been... more

Houdini HT Wu (PhD, PA-R) Birmingham

Houdini HT Wu (PHD, PA-R) Birmingham I am a clinical scientist at the Public Health England (PHE), Birmingham Laboratory and a physician associate at the Coventry Road Medical Centre,... more

ED Department in North West London

Frontline Physician Associate’s experiences in Emergency Department (ED) in North West London   With the recent COVID situation, everyone was working outside of their... more

Bilal Chaudhry PA-R

Haematology/Oncology, Northampton General Hospital I am a Physician Associate working in Haematology at Northampton General Hospital. Having worked closely with cancer patients during... more

Daniel Meehan PA-R, Coleraine, Northern Ireland

Daniel Meehan PA-R Emergency Medicine, Coleraine, Northern Ireland I have been working in my usual jobs during the COVID-19 pandemic, splitting my time between the Emergency Department and... more

Swiss Cottage Surgery, GP Practice

Swiss Cottage Surgery, GP Practice Swiss Cottage Surgery is a GP practice in north-central London that employs five physician associates. Lead PA and partner at the practice, Raj Gill,... more

Brian Dzikiti PA-R, Mid-Yorkshire Hospitals

I am a newly qualified PA, and my first job is on a COVID ward. When I began studying two years ago, I did not imagine that I would qualify during a pandemic. However, it’s been great... more

Laura Pilling PA-R, Liverpool

I am a PA working in respiratory medicine. During the coronavirus pandemic I am working across both primary and secondary care as part of a community respiratory team who manage patients... more

Liam Allan PA-R, Inverness, Scotland

Account of COVID-19 frontline work from a Physician Associate The discovery and subsequent pandemic spread of SARS-CoV-2 (Coronavirus) has entirely transformed the delivery of health... more

Diane O’Meara PA-C/R, Leicester

My pre-COVID work involved primarily seeing gastroenterology patients in clinic, chasing and actioning results, writing to GPs and patients and answering queries from patients who phone... more

Cenk Alhan PA-R, Liverpool

I am a PA working in respiratory medicine and currently based within Knowsley Community Service. I support the team during the COVID-19 crisis by... more