GP trainees can gain a wealth of mental health experience while undertaking our psychiatry rotation. Post holders learn how to screen and diagnose people experiencing mental health problems, as well as identify psychological illness when diagnosing physical illness.

During the attachment post holders work in a multidisciplinary community mental health team and collaborate with other specialist mental health services during referral procedures.

Post holders can also expect to work with a consultant on either a primary or secondary care service development project as well as other educational initiatives. Special interest work includes:

  • Primary care liaison
  • Crisis resolution teams
  • Substance misuse
  • Community forensic teams
  • Early intervention in psychosis teams
  • Child and adolescent services


  • Assessing and providing initial treatment for newly admitted patients
  • Assessing and managing inpatients, including contributing to multidisciplinary reviews by presenting updated clinical information on patients and documenting the multidisciplinary discussion
  • Observing early indicators of difficulty in the psychological wellbeing of children and young people
  • Performing physical examinations
  • Assessing and managing clinic referrals
  • Participating in CPA meetings
  • Liaising with other professionals within and external to the service, e.g. voluntary agencies and carers
  • Preparing psychiatric reports and clinical referrals for mental health and physical health services

Rotas and supervision

During normal working hours you’ll receive clinical supervision from specialty doctors and consultant psychiatrists. Outside of working hours you’ll receive clinical supervision from the on-call higher specialist trainee or consultant psychiatrist. During outpatient and inpatient clinical work you’ll be supervised (either direct, close or discussion) by a consultant psychiatrist, tailored to the competency level and experience you have.

Higher level trainees undertake both in- and out-of-hours on-call duties for adult and forensic service delivery units at the St Bernard’s (West London Mental NHS Trust). A separate senior on-call system has been set up for Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services CAMHS cases.

Training opportunities

During the attachment the post holder will have protected time for educational and training activities.
Training objectives are formally agreed at the start of the position. Objective reflect the requirements of the current Royal College core and general psychiatric curriculum, commensurate with the level of training, and any specific recommendations arising from the educational supervisor and annual review of competence progression outcomes.

Psychiatry education and training topics include:

  • The use of the Mental Health Act and Mental Capacity Act in an acute setting
  • Supervised preparation of reports
  • Giving oral evidence to the hospital managers and mental health review tribunals for detained patients
  • The management of physical health needs and psychiatric co-morbidities.

Trainees must attend a mandatory academic programme meeting every Wednesday and Thursday afternoon.

The programme includes a series of lectures, case presentations and seminars organised by the postgraduate department, followed by a supervised critical review session (journal club), weekly reflective liaison meeting (A&E), and weekly psychotherapy balint group.

In addition core trainees participate in a weekly reflective liaison meeting which is supervised by adult, forensic and Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS) consultants in rotation to discuss the management of cases seen while on call.

In preparation for the CASC exam trainees are encouraged to organise themselves in exam focussed tutorial groups. A mock exam (with simulated scenarios) is also offered.

Trainees within the scheme are allocated to an educational supervisor, who they meet with at least every other month. The supervisor will oversee the attainment of training objectives, progression within the assessment programme and completion of the structured assessments required for the Annual Review of Competence Progression (ARCP).

Conditions of service

  • Imperial College Healthcare
    Lead Provider

    We provide pioneering core, specialty and GP medical postgraduate training across North West London.

    To support you throughout your professional development, we have a range of integrated training options across 28 specialties, which are led by expert faculty staff.

    Find out how to apply

Further information