Skip to main content
Education Centres

This site is best viewed with a modern browser. You appear to be using an old version of Internet Explorer.

Guardian of Safe Working Hours

Updated 05 October 2020

The Guardian of Safe Working Hours has been introduced to protect patients and doctors by making sure doctors are not working unsafe hours.

The guardian will:

  • act as the champion of safe working hours for doctors in approved training programmes
  • provide assurance to the trust board or equivalent body that doctors are safely rostered
  • record and monitor compliance with the restrictions on working hours stipulated in the 2016 terms and conditions of service
  • work in collaboration with the DME to ensure that the identified issues within exception reports concerning both working hours and training hours are properly addressed by the employer
  • escalate issues in relation to working hours raised in exception reports to the relevant executive body for decisions where these have not been addressed at a local level
  • require a work schedule review to be undertaken where there are regular or persistent breaches in safe working hours which have not been addressed
  • directly receive exception reports where there are immediate or serious risks to safety and ensure that the organisation at a local level has addressed the concerns that led to the exception report; where this is not addressed within the timescales identified in Schedule 5, and the guardian deems it appropriate, the guardian will raise this with the executive of the employing and/or host organisation
  • have the authority to intervene in any instance where the guardian feels the safety of patients and/or doctors is compromised, or that issues are not being resolved satisfactorily
  • distribute monies received as a consequence of financial penalties to improve the training and working experience of all doctors
  • prepare, not less than annually, a report for the Trust board or equivalent body which summarises all exception reports and work schedule reviews and provides assurance on compliance with safe working hours by both the employer and doctors in approved training programmes.

Dr Robert Stuart is the Guardian of Safe Working Hours for the Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.

Rob will be available by prior appointment on Mondays in the George Pickering Education Centre and Wednesdays at the Terence Mortimer Education Centre for meetings with individuals or groups needing to discuss their rotas / working hours.

Please email him to arrange an appointment.