It has become increasingly important that doctors are able to take an effective leadership role to ensure delivery of good clinical care. Leadership is not just for senior consultants and those doctors with medical/clinical director responsibilities. All psychiatrists, including trainees, interface with team members and other colleagues, and they are expected to demonstrate leadership through team working, identifying problems and solving them, making a contribution to managing services and most importantly acting as an advocate for patients.
All the postgraduate psychiatry curricula include elements of leadership and although leadership training is becoming increasingly important, it has not been delivered systematically. Registrars report that their clinical supervisors demonstrate considerable variation in their leadership skills making it difficult for registrars to progressively develop competencies smoothly as they move from post to post within their programmes.
Through the West Midlands Mental Health Institute, representing the Regions mental health provider trusts, support has been given to use dedicated leadership funding from Health Education West Midlands to develop the local curriculum and provide a systematic approach to postgraduate training in leadership.
Colleagues from the Institute of Clinical Leadership, Medical School, University of Warwick (Professor Peter Spurgeon), and Organisational Research Consultancy Network International (ORCNI), (Hugh Flanagan) have been commissioned to work with the West Midlands Postgraduate School of Psychiatry with the aim of implementing a revised local curriculum from August 2015 onwards.
These pages describe the project and how the School plans to deliver improved training in Leadership.
Seven phases of the project have been identified
Phase 1. Scoping
An initial scoping phase involved interviewing a sample of tutors, programme directors, course organisers, supervising consultants and trainees. In summary this found that Leadership training is limited, uncoordinated from year to year and place to place, and variable in terms of what exactly is covered. However virtually all interviewees were positive and enthusiastic about improving the content and pattern of provision
Phase 2. curriculum mapping
The second phase has commenced with the formation of an implementation group which will establish an outline of the curriculum map. Progress has been made in terms of developing an outline of the models of teaching to be used, the programme content and practical aspects of delivery of the programme.
Phase 3. Teaching the Teachers
The third phase will be one of "training the trainers". The objective here will be to prepare supervisors to deliver specific aspects of the leadership programme in the workplace and in the lecture theatre.
Phase 4. Catch up
Whilst delivery of the full programme will begin in August 2015, it will be important that the existing registrars, who will be part way through their core or advanced training programmes are given the opportunity to fully participate in the Leadership Programme. Therefore prior to August 2015, there will be a "catch up" programme. Phase four will consist of an intensive package to orientate existing registrars to the leadership programme and all of the learning opportunities associated with it. Funding for this aspect of the programme has been applied for
Phase 5 Programme delivery
Programme delivery will begin with the induction for the new intake of core (CT1) and advanced registrars (ST4) in August/September 2015 and be followed by a series of lectures, small group, online and workplace based learning experiences which will enable registrars to evidence their progression with specified curriculum based leadership competencies.
Phase 6 Maintenance
In-programme feedback will be built into the structure and used to further develop the programme. The leadership tutors will require supervision from leadership experts as they develop their own advanced knowledge base. New leadership tutors will require training and supervision. This model of bringing on new tutors will need support until such time as there is sufficient expertise within the consultant workforce for this to be self sustaining.
Phase 7 Evaluation
An evaluation will be conducted by an external academic body.