Out of Programme (OOP)

Out of Programme (OOP) relates to trainees that wish to participate in an experience that is out of their planned programme of training.  There are a number of circumstances that trainees may wish to spend time out of programme; to gain training or clinical experience, to undertake research or to take a career break.

Time out of programme will not normally be agreed until a trainee has been in a training programme for at least a year and will not normally be allowed in the final year of training other than in exceptional circumstances. (Please note: The limitation regarding final year of training does not apply to 'acting up' applications)

Before applying for OOP, trainees must discuss their plans with their Educational Supervisor and/or Training Programme Director.  This discussion will determine the suitability of the out of programme experience and ensures the proposed post will meet the educational needs of the trainee.

Health Education West Midlands requires OOP Application Forms and supporting documentation to be submitted at least 6 months in advance of the proposed OOP start date. Please note that applications that do not meet the minimum 6 month timescale will be rejected and Trainees will not be supported to go on an OOP. It is the Trainee’s responsibility to ensure all relevant information as stipulated in the guidance document is submitted on time.

Medical trainees only - please note that you are also required to submit form C6 below three months before commencing your period of OOP, and form C7 three months before returning to training


Please note: You must not start your OOP training without receiving a letter confirming your OOP from the Programme Team at Health Education England.

Applying for OOP

Please refer to the OOP Guidance Document when applying for time out of programme.

2018 OOP Application form

OOP Extension Application Form Nov 2018 EXT

OOP Guidance

For Trainees taking time out of programme HEE would encourage to refer to the resources of the Supported Return to training process which can be accessed here.




All OOP Applications and Correspondence should be sent in one email to:




Page updated: 27.06.2018