Workplace Exchange Scheme offers benefits for health practitioners

Workplace Exchange Scheme offers benefits for health practitioners

In 2021 General Practitioners and Consultants working in Herefordshire chose to take part in a Workplace Exchange Programme.

The idea was to indulge professional curiosity by spending half a day in their colleague’s workplace, sharing ideas and strengthening relationships.

Despite the pandemic, 10% of the Herefordshire GP and Wye Valley Trust consultant body chose to take part in the Workplace Exchange Scheme and in November (just before Omicron!) participants met to discuss what they had learnt and how to encourage ideas and communication across primary and secondary care.

Comments included:

  • 'GP-hospital communication/collaboration is absolutely essential in optimising patient care and building these relationships is a really great way to do this’
  • ‘GPs have super IT systems - with one log in :-) to support efficiency, very busy with diverse clinical presentations and never just one problem... three in consultation and one on the way to the door...!’
  • ‘It felt like a really positive and exciting space to discuss ideas about communication / working together’
  •  ‘Respect for each other’s job roles and challenges’
  • 'Was great to be able to see what consultants do from the other side and get an understanding of the role of acute medical consultants which didn’t exist when I worked at WVT'
  • ' Behind-the-scenes work that goes on in a large GP surgery, and the remarkable effort GPs need to make each day'

And the feedback about the scheme? It (narrowly) ranged from ‘Very useful to do this’, ‘Such a valuable experience’ ‘A wonderful opportunity’ to ‘Can we do it again please?’.

Dr Rosie Wellesley, who is the Workplace Exchange Project Leaders, says:

I’ve noticed a real appetite for colleagues to learn from each other and share their experiences. This seems to reflect a national trend for these type of workplace exchange schemes since the first big scheme was set up in Southampton in 2017. I am keen to hear from others who have ideas for link ups that they would like to share."

You can email Rosie via There is also a short video of the November event where you can hear clinicians' main take-home points from their exchanges.

18th January 2022

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