The following information is provided to give you general guidelines on working as a locum through Locum Link. If you have any queries at all please contact us immediately.
- Our Services
Locum Link is a Northern Ireland based locum agency. We are the largest supplier of locum doctors in Northern Ireland. Our established and trained staff will advise you of the most suitable posts according to your requirements.
Our aim at Locum Link is to provide our doctors with locums as and when it suits them and let them accomplish their assignments with ease and satisfaction. We are renowned for our friendly service, personal attention and prompt payment.
To register, please complete the registration form and health declaration form and send these to us together will all other documentation requested. Details can be sent by post, email or fax.
- Curriculum Vitae
If there are any gaps in your CV such as a prolonged period between qualification and GMC registration, you should include details of what you did during that time. If you started a job and discontinued it after a short time, you must still include it on your CV. Hospitals assume your CV is complete unless you inform them.
Consultants will often retain references on file for you once requested and it requires minimum work for their secretary to copy it to us. We will request new references every 6-12 months to ensure we hold a copy from your most recent substantive post on file.
- Training Recognition For Locum Work
If a position is normally recognised for training it may also, in certain circumstances, be recognised if you do the same job as a locum. To check whether you may receive recognition at the end of the job you should consult the appropriate Royal College for advice before taking up the locum post.
- After Registration
Your details will be put onto our system. We will continually search for jobs that match your requirements and contact you regularly, keeping you updated on your prospects. It is always worth seeing what we have to offer before accepting work from any other source. We give priority to those doctors who are easily contactable and keep in touch.
You will receive a timesheet and a health declaration for each week or part week of the post you are covering. You should ensure you carefully fill in the exact hours that you work. All forms need to be completed and returned to us as soon as the locum has been worked. The timesheet should be signed by yourself and a supervising consultant or senior member from the trust. A pre-paid envelope is provided for your convenience. Timesheets can also be faxed or emailed to the office.
- Pay Procedure
PAYE calculations and BACS payments will be done weekly each Friday for timesheets received that week. The BACS payment processing system works on a three day cycle, this means the money will be cleared to your account the following Tuesday.
- P.A.Y.E. and National Insurance
Your earnings are taxable under the Pay As You Earn (PAYE) tax system. When you register, you need to supply us with your National Insurance Number, as we are also responsible for deducting National Insurance contributions.
- Reporting and Identification
On arrival at the hospital you should report to reception/switchboard to collect bleep/pager, or Locum Link will advise you of a named person to report to. When working you will be expected to wear/show your Locum Link identification badge, which we will supply.
- Long Term Locums
Locum work arises from vacancies caused by holidays, illness, unfilled posts and unexpected vacancies. As such, most posts are for one to two weeks initially although they are often extended. Agency locum work is well rewarded.
- Short Term Locums
Short term work, by its very nature comes in at short notice. Hospitals anticipate doctors undertaking this type of work may need to arrive after 5pm and leave earlier than 9am. Please indicate when considering a locum the time you would be able to arrive and leave. You are paid for the hours you actually work.
- Police Check
All hospitals will require you to have a negative police check. NHS policy states that Health Authorities should provide staff with a letter on request which confirms a negative Police Check from there receiving an official letter after the check has been completed. An Access NI police check application form is sent out with you application pack and is available to download from our website.
- Criminal Convictions
Under the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 (Exceptions) Order 1975, applicants for locum medical posts are not entitled to withhold information about convictions which for other purposes are ‘spent’. Doctors are expected to provide Locum Link with a statement of any criminal convictions or cautions.
- Legal Context For Medical Practice
You are expected to have an understanding and experience of the legal context for medical practice appropriate to the posts you undertake (eg, the application of the Mental Health Act 1983 or the Mental Health (Scotland) Act 1984 in psychiatric practice). For further information, the BMA publication ‘Rights and Responsibilities of Doctors’ is recommended.
- Maximum Working Hours
You should ensure that working a locum will not cause you to breach the controls on hours set down in the New Deal on Junior Doctors’ Hours. Working to excess may negate the benefits of Crown Indemnity and should tiredness be blamed if a mishap occurs, it could have serious implications. Your acceptance of work is taken as evidence that you will not breach the controls
- Cancellation Of Appointments By Clients
Clients hold the right to cancel appointments, vary rotas or terminate positions when you have already begun work, and without notice and without compensating Locum Link for your loss of earnings. In instances such as this we will endeavour to offer you alternative work.
- Cancellation Of Locums By Doctors
It causes tremendous frustration if you cancel after accepting and you should never accept a booking if you do not have every intention of working it. Cancelling bookings without good reason may result in future bookings being withdrawn. If unexpected circumstances arise you should ensure that Locum Link is informed at the earliest possible opportunity by telephone. It may be appropriate for you to also inform the hospital but you must always notify us in the first instance.
- Hep B and Agency Work
The NHS wish to protect doctors and patients from acquiring or spreading Hep B and it is impossible to place doctors in work if they have not provided information regarding their Hepatitis B status. All hospitals require a photocopy of a UK / Irish pathology report which includes details of titre level together with your full name and date of birth.
Acceptable levels vary from hospital to hospital but documentation containing your date of birth and showing a Hepatitis B antibody titre level of over 100 miu/ml from a test carried out in the UK within the last two years will almost always be accepted. Many hospitals have built their protocols around set levels and the word ‘immune’ is not considered adequate. Documents must show that you have an Identified and Validated/Verified Sample (IVS).
Getting a certificate
If you have recently had an Occupational Health medical, your Hepatitis B status may have been evaluated and the result sent to your GP. Your GP should be able to give you a letter confirming your status and you should request that the titre level and your date of birth is indicated just not the word ‘immune’. Alternatively, Occupational Health may provide you with a copy of the result. We are informed that your GP should be prepared to test you, free of charge, for antibodies and/or antigen and this may be appropriate if you have had the vaccination in the past but not followed it through with a blood test to confirm immunity.
Vaccination against Hep B
This should be available on request from the Occupational Health Department for NHS employees.
The vaccination comprises a course of three injections at 0, 1 and 6 months with a blood test two months after the last injection. A booster is currently recommended every 3, 5 or 10 years according to titre levels. As the process takes so long we recommend you obtain an HbsAg antigen level to prove your non-infectivity.