IMG support avenues in the Southwest paediatric deanery

Welcome to the Southwest deanery.

Whether you are a trainee or non-trainee, this is a very supportive deanery that is acutely aware of the needs of IMGs and actively supports them.
Whichever trust you are based at, there is plenty of support for IMGs, whether through the paediatric deanery or regionally and nationally. This is a list of resources and available support. I know if you are new to the NHS, sometimes all this paperwork, forms and letters might seem overwhelming but keep this document in mind and access it whenever you feel you need support to see what you might benefit from.

Through the paediatric deanery:
-We have an IMG representative that should be able to direct you to any support available. You should be put in touch with them via the college tutor in each trust.
-We have a yearly IMG regional induction that is usually held in Derriford hospital in Plymouth. These events allow IMGs in the deanery to meet, network, and incorporate learning relevant to IMGs. The registration for this event is circulated to college tutors and can also be accessed via paedshub. Link: You will have to register for an account first.
-We have IMG-targeted simulation days multiple times a year. These events are excellent for introducing IMGs novel to simulation learning to the concept in a safe environment. Many scenarios address topics relevant to IMGs, focusing on safeguarding, leadership, and communication. We have had excellent feedback for these courses. Registration for these days is also usually via Paedshub.
-This is the link to the RCPCH website, where you can access resources on various topics; the safeguarding companion is particularly useful.

Regionally via HEE Southwest:
This is the Health Education England (HEE) Southwest website for Severn and Peninsula. HEE is the government body that is responsible for all trainees in England.
They have a page for international medical graduates. Some of the resources on the page below are relevant to trainees only, but many are relevant to all doctors. One good resource is the link to the IMG network WhatsApp group at the top of the page. This is an excellent place to ask questions and find IMGs near you within the Southwest.
On the above link, you will find information about different government bodies involved in your practice, such as GMC and HEE, and essential things required to settle in the UK, such as driving licenses!

National support:
Team Soft-landing is a voluntary non-profit organisation hoping to make your first landing in the UK slightly softer. Run by IMG Paediatricians for IMG Paediatricians.
The soft-landing team provide support and different online workshops; they have ST3-4 mock interviews, GRID practice events, and a yearly induction workshop endorsed by the RCPCH, among many other avenues of support. They have a regional representative for most deaneries.
You can contact the team through the following:
Twitter: @paedsoftlanding
Youtube: @softlanding5456

Moving to a new country is not easy; uprooting your life and moving away from family to be in a foreign place is hard, on top of trying to take in and learn as much as you can clinically. Nearly every IMG will tell you it was hard. Please talk to someone if you are feeling stressed, anxious or low.
Speak to people at work, particularly your supervisor. If you are a trust-grade doctor and have not been allocated a supervisor, make sure you ask for this. Make sure you register with a GP and ask for help if you feel you need it.
If you are a trainee, talk to your supervisor and training programme director if you need them. You can also ask for support via the professional support unit. This is a self-referral. Also, remember to contact your GP if needed.
On the above link, you will find information about the professional support unit and other avenues of support, such as SuppoRRT.

I hope this helps,
Your current IMG representative and Equality diversity and inclusion fellow with HEE Southwest.
Hana Bashir.

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