Severn Faculty

Welcome from Severn Faculty

We support over 1700 members, Fellows, Associates and Associates in Training across Bristol, South Gloucestershire, Gloucestershire, Somerset, Bath and North-East Somerset and part of Wiltshire region. We provide local networking and education support to GPs and their peers in the area.

Get involved

We rely on members to play an active role locally, promoting the College aims and objectives. It is essential to raise and maintain awareness of demographic issues and needs of GPs and patients alike, and develop initiatives to support these. Members of the Faculty contribute to shaping the future of general practice by having a say in issues pertinent to GPs which is then fed back to College Council.

Upcoming events

View details and online booking can be found along with all local education and social events  Some events are detailed below. 

Your Faculty Board

Each faculty is represented by a Faculty Board, made up of a number of dedicated GPs and lay representatives who work voluntarily towards the College's vision, purpose and priority goals.

Faculty Officers

  • Dr Kirsty Alexander, Chair (Joint)
  • Dr Matt Hoghton, Chair (Joint) & Senior International Representative
  • Dr Jill Wilson - Provost, Fellowship Lead, & Deputy Council Representative
  • Dr Sheila Pietersen - Vice Chair & Wellbeing Team Lead
  • Dr Rani Robson - Honorary Secretary & GP Promotional Lead
  • Dr Martyn Hewett - Honorary Treasurer, FFC, Revalidation Lead & Wellbeing Representative
  • Dr Steve Holmes - Council Representative and FFC

Faculty Board members

  • Dr Liz Alden - Swindon Representative
  • Dr Emily Barnard - Wellbeing Representative
  • Dr Jenny Cox - First5 Lead (Joint)
  • Dr Emily Cant - Junior International Representative (Joint)
  • Dr Pam Curtis -  Education Lead & South Glos Representative
  • Dr Tom Dazzi - AiT Rep ST3
  • Dr Jenny Doughty- Climate Champion & Sustainability Lead (Joint)  
  • Dr Navindi Fernandopulle - Foundation Doctor Rep F1
  • Dr Sophie Foot - Junior International Representative (Joint) 
  • Dr Chloe Gamlin - Foundation Doctor Rep F1    
  • Dr Sam Gillett - First5 Lead (Joint)
  • Dr Anna Harrison - Banes Rep (on Mat. leave)
  • Jenny Hepworth - Lay Representative (Joint)
  • Dr Jenna Hussain -  Foundation Doctor Rep F1
  • Dr Alice James - AiT Rep, ST1
  • Dr Barbara Laue - University Representative
  • Dr Hein Le Roux - Clinical Commissioning Lead
  • Dr Rupert Morgan  - Foundation Doctor Rep F1
  • Dr Ify Odofin - Gloucestershire Representative
  • Dr Joana Obire - Foundation Doctor Rep F2
  • Dr Graham Rawlinson - Late Career & Retired Members Lead & FFC
  • Niamh Roberts  - Student Representative        
  • Dr Leka Satkunananthan - First5 Lead (Joint)
  • Dr Lindsay Smith  - FFC
  • Dr Marcus Stevens - AiT Rep ST2
  • Dr Will Wallage - Education Lead & AKT Course Tutor
  • Dr Anne Whitehouse - Severn Deanery Representative
  • Lisa-Jayne Wyatt Sherman- Lay Representative (Joint)
  • Dr Jess Wynter-Bee - Climate Champion & Sustainability Lead (Joint)
  • Vacancy - Bristol Representative
  • Vacancy - Nurse Representative

10 core roles for faculties (approved by Council November 2013) [PDF]

Getting involved

We rely on members to play an active role locally, promoting the College aims and objectives. It is essential to raise and maintain awareness of demographic issues and needs of GPs and patients alike, and develop initiatives to support these.

If you would like to find out more about becoming involved with the faculty we would be delighted to hear from you.


Faculty News - July 2021

Faculty board meeting

The last Faculty Board meeting was held on 23 June 2021.  The next Faculty Board Meeting is scheduled to be held on Wednesday 22 September 2021, via online conference facilities. Subsequent meetings scheduled to be held on the following dates, Wednesday 17 November 2021, 16 Feb 2022, 22 Jun 2022, 21 Sep 2022 and 16 Nov 2022 . All meetings will be held via online conference facilities for the foreseeable future.  All members are invited to participate in these meetings and are very welcome. If you would like participate and discuss any item covered or would like an item to be considered at a future meeting, please do not hesitate to contact us.

The Severn Faculty AGM 2021 will take place during October or November 2021 (date to be set)  All are welcome. Bookings will be taken via our website online system and will be free for members.  

Severn faculty at RCGP Council June 2021

RCGP’s UK Council on 26 June presented some insightful debates around these issues and how we, as a profession, prepare to care for our patients in the context of a limited workforce, patient backlog, changing NHS structures, evolving multi-practitioner teams and a blend of remote and face to face consultations. What does all this mean for us and our communities? Our UK Council Rep, Dr Steve Holmes, shared some of our experiences with our UK peers at last month’s Governing Council meeting. These council meetings are one of the ways our Faculty can influence and shape the RCGP policy and campaigns.

Inspire Awards and Vibrant faculty awards

Nominations are open for this year’s Inspire Awards as well as the Vibrant Faculty Awards. The Inspire Awards recognise voluntary contributions of our esteemed colleagues to the College and general practice as a whole and will have special significance this year. The Vibrant Faculty Awards celebrate innovations being delivered locally by Faculties to support members across all of our four nations.  Please do take a moment to consider and nominate your colleagues for an RCGP Inspire Award and submit a nomination for this year’s Vibrant Faculty Award.

Choosing a career in GP

Dr Jenna Hussain one of our Foundation Doctor Representatives has written a blog post Why I am choosing general practice?


Faculty Events

Details of forthcoming Severn Faculty meetings, social events and educational courses can be accessed via the Upcoming Events box on the right and select "see more events". 

Art & Resilience Classes with Art Square Plus - For all GPs living life in the fast lane in need of a well deserved break & recharge (let’s be honest, who doesn't need that after 18 months of Covid pandemic!). The RCGP South West Faculties have combined with Art Square Plus to bring members four online art classes. Art Square Plus is an art project run by professional painter Chris May and Diana Church, amateur painter and GP in Southampton. For more information and to see photos from previous classes visit www.artsquareplus.com No previous painting ability needed!

Saturday 18 September, Saturday 2 October, Saturday 6 November, Saturday 20 November 2021 - 10:00 - 12:00 (four online classes at a special price of £40 for members) booking link

Severn Faculty Social Walk - We are planning a local walk. The walk organised recently was unfortunately postponed so we hope that you will support our first organised walk when it is announced.  It will primarily be a social event and give members the opportunity to meet in person. We hope you will join us! 

Our First5 team are planning events for the year and will share details of them in our news feed and on the facebook and via twitter.

Collaborate with internationally minded GPs to discuss and learn about how to be involved in global health care.  Ever dreamt  (or still dreaming) about doing a stint with MSF or setting up a teaching partnership with a surgery in Malawi but feel like day to day life gets in the way? ‘Severn International’ is a growing network of GPs with an interest in international health. Many of us have experience in or seek ways to combine a local GP career with work overseas, ranging from trainees preparing to work in South Africa, to qualified GPs volunteering for ‘Freedom from Torture’, teaching medical students on global health issues or planning to take on a new role after retirement. We would love you to participate and share your experiences and plans with like minded colleagues. Perhaps this could kick start plans for your next adventure.   We will let you know when these meetings are arranged via this website and the weekly news feed.

The annual Severn GP Trainee Careers Fair is set to take place on 9 March 2022. We will have a full programme of workshops throughout the day with a range of speakers on subjects like locum, partnerships, alternative career paths, pensions, appraisal and revalidation and will include key note speakers. We also have GP appropriate sponsors. The day will be chargeable and the fee can normally be claimed back, following attendance, from the Trainee's study budget (subject to agreement).  See upcoming events for booking details closer to the time.

GP Parent  Are you expecting a new arrival? Or have you recently become a parent? If so Severn Faculty invite you to attend our GP Parent friendly event. This event is aimed at giving you support during the transition of becoming a parent and going on or completing parental leave.  We will update you via this website and our ebulletin when this event is rescheduled to run in our region.

We have planned a new course for this region, a Joint Injections Course. This one day Joint Injection Course is aimed at practitioners working with musculoskeletal patients who would like to improve their assessment, diagnosis and management skills of musculoskeletal conditions, including the role of, theory behind and practical use of corticosteroid joint and tissue injections.  See upcoming events.  We will update you when we are able to run this course, subject to the developments of the Covid19 situation.

Attending one of our two day Minor Surgery courses will enable you to develop the skills required to run a successful minor surgery service in primary care. Topics covered include minor skin procedures, joint injections and non-surgical techniques as well as advice about how to set up a service and the medico-legal and contractual obligations required of those practising minor surgery. These prove popular so please book your place to avoid disappointment.  See upcoming events.  We plan to reschedule this course later in the year, subject to the changing situation with regard to Covid19 lockdown.

We hold an annual Gala Dinner with After Dinner Gale lecture, which is held in memory of Dr Arthur H Gale. In 1950 he was appointed as the first director of postgraduate medical studies in the University of Bristol. He set up the general organisation for the new pre-registration posts and the registrars in the hospitals of the South-Western Region; he also initiated the postgraduate courses in Bristol and the region. He was a good friend to local GPs and the Faculty. Our 2020 Gala Dinner & Gale Lecture was scheduled to take place in June in Bristol but was cancelled due to the situation with Covid19.  Each year the evening begins with a welcome drink followed by a two course buffet dinner with drinks and an inspiring Gale Lecture.  We will update this website when the next event is scheduled.

Another event held annually for Trainee GPs as they celebrate their achievements is the Severn GP Trainee QI Awards and Graduation Celebration. This event is for all Severn Deanery GPST3/4s to mark successful completion of GP training with colleagues and supervisors and to celebrate the start of their GP careers. We will have an inspiring guest speaker to give the “Michael Lennard Lecture” The afternoon will be followed by an early evening celebratory BBQ. Educational and Clinical Supervisors, APDs, TPDs, Deanery and University colleagues were warmly welcomed. All attendees are required book their place at this free event. Please ensure you include your role and ST status if applicable during the booking process.  Photos and details of the event are published on our Facebook page each year. We will update you via this website and via our emailed ebulletin when we have scheduled the graduation event for 2021. 

AKT Preparation Courses -  These courses have limited places and are reserved for Severn & Peninsula GP trainees (prepaid by their Deanery), and should be booked early via the website, to avoid disappointment. It may be possible for Non- Severn GP Trainees to book but they should, in the first instance, contact the faculty at Severn@rcgp.org.uk or check out our online booking system for availability.  Bookings will be taken via the RCGP website.

AKT - A one day RCGP course preparing for the Applied Knowledge Test of the MRCGP, to include methods of preparation, statistics for the MRCGP exam and a mock AKT paper.

RSA Preparation Courses -  These courses have limited places and are reserved for Severn & Peninsula GP trainees (prepaid by their Deanery), and should be booked early via the website, to avoid disappointment. It may be possible for Non- Severn GP Trainees to book but they should, in the first instance, contact the faculty at Severn@rcgp.org.uk  or check for availability via our online booking system via the RCGP website.  These places are bookable on a first come first serve basis.

RSA  - These one day RCGP courses will include an introduction to MRCGP, what to expect and live RSA circuits in communication, ethical dilemmas and clinical cases.  

Please contact us if you require any further information - severn@rcgp.org.uk


Faculty Initiatives

Severn GP Mentorship Scheme

(Please note that mentor requests are not being progressed during the current Covid-19 situation)

RCGP have launched an online Mentoring Scheme  via the RCGP website.  Please contact us to find out how to sign up if you are interested in becoming a mentor or wish to be matched with a GP Mentor volunteer through the new scheme.

The Severn Faculty run a GP Mentorship Scheme. This is an initiative originally developed by local GPs, which was jointly funded by RCGP Severn Faculty, the School of Primary Care of Severn Postgraduate Medical Education and the CCGs with support from the local GP Education Trusts. It aims to provide confidential mentoring support to GPs in Severn.  This scheme is not taking on new mentees at this time.

Would you like to be matched with a GP Mentor?

Please do not hesitate to contact Severn Faculty for more information on how to be matched with a GP mentor.  Please email severn@rcgp.org.uk for details on the central RCGP Mentoring Scheme. 

Are you a qualified GP considering becoming a GP Mentor?  Please contact us if you would like more information on the scheme or are thinking of becoming a mentor. 

GP on Call Bike Scheme

This scheme is a new initiative originally developed by RCGP Wessex Faculty in conjunction with Cycle of Good. The idea is for practices across the Severn Faculty region to purchase a "GP on Call" bike. The bikes are old postal bikes which have been saved from landfill, recycled and rebuilt by offenders in HM Prisons across the UK. Offenders are given the chance to obtain a certificate of bike maintenance, boosting their skills, confidence and likelihood of gaining employment, which is a key step to preventing repeat offences.

As this is a social enterprise, in addition to helping save the environment and boosting employment opportunities, when you buy a bike, you also give a bike. For every bike bought, another is sent to Malawi, where The African Workshop employ eight local people to repair and service the donated bikes from Britain. The bikes are then sold to Malawians who can travel to work, transport goods to market and travel miles to school or college. Bikes in Malawi can be life transforming and often mean an income for life.

There are many reasons for having a practice bike to do visits and some are listed here:

  • Improve fitness/health
  • Be seen to be out and about as a GP - improving profile
  • Influence your population - if the GP is seen on a bike, it may help persuade them to do more exercise
  • Save fuel costs
  • Personalised bike so it is clear that you are a GP doing a visit (hopefully makes the bike less likely to be stolen)
  • Wessex & Severn Faculties are giving something back to their members (we will pay half the price of the bike)

Why use this bike scheme?

  • If you are a Severn Faculty member, working in a practice in the Severn Faculty footprint, we will pay half of cost of the bike
  • It is a Social enterprise so for every bike that is purchased, a bike is sent to Malawi
  • These are old Postal Bikes and Offenders are given skills to rebuild them, creating employment and improving prospects
  • The bikes are pretty universal size wise and are built to carry heavy loads (160kg) so are pretty easy to ride with gearing to get up those hills nice and easily!
  • Tray at the front to hold your medical bag
  • Each bike is personalised in classic RCGP blue with decal as above and its own individual number

To help launch this scheme, members of the Severn Faculty are able to purchase one of these bikes with a 50% subsidy paid by the Faculty. Please note that no profit is made by the RCGP on the sale of these bikes and they are purchased through a charity.

Please email us to find out how to purchase a bike severn@rcgp.org.uk.

Funding opportunities - Severn Faculty Bursary Applications

(Please note that applications will not be processed during the Covid-19 situation)

Severn Faculty RCGP will consider Bursary applications from Members of the Faculty, Associates in Training (GP Trainees) plus Foundation doctors and Medical Students with an interest in GP. To be eligible for a Bursary, a doctor must be a ‘Member in good standing’, (that is, have paid the annual subscription to College which is appropriate to their role). Hence, the award process is open without discrimination to all paid-up members whether they be an AiT, First 5, Principal, Salaried, Associate, Assistant or Locum GP. In addition, we welcome applications from foundation doctors and medical students with an interest in Primary Care.

Bursaries have a maximum value of £500 to contribute towards or pay for the costs associated with General Practice projects they wish to undertake. All innovative projects relevant to Primary Care in the Severn region will be considered. Projects or activities may include (but are not limited to):

  • Service development activities
  • Research
  • Conference attendance (usually with a poster or oral presentation)

The activity proposed by the applicant should satisfy some or all of the following criteria:

  1. Direct and clear benefit to Society / Patients (essential requirement)
  2. Clear benefit to the professional development of the individual doctor
  3. Benefit to other doctors and/or health staff
  4. Benefit to the RCGP
  5. Benefit to the Severn Faculty

Applications should be submitted to the Faculty on the Bursary application form which can be obtained by emailing Severn@rcgp.org.uk  Applicants should use a maximum of 500 words to describe the project/ activity and how it fulfils the required criteria. The application should include an outline of the costs and how a Bursary would be spent.  Please send your completed application form to SevernFacultybursaries@rcgp.org.uk.

Applications will be reviewed by the Faculty’s Bursary committee on a quarterly basis (with closing dates at the end of December, March, June and September). Applicants will be notified of the result within a month of the end of each application window.

Successful applicants will be required to provide a report for the Faculty at the conclusion of their project which may be published via the Faculty’s news feed, and will also be asked to present at the Faculty’s AGM (usually in the Autumn).

Please note that the Faculty has a limited Bursary fund. Up to three Bursaries will be available in each 3 month period, and any unused Bursaries will be available in the next quarter. Unsuccessful applicants are welcome to re-apply during subsequent application windows.


Fellowship

Fellowship is an honour and a mark of achievement recognising a significant contribution to:

  • health and welfare of the community
  • science or practice of medicine
  • aims of RCGP, or any organisation which benefits general practice

Full details of applying for fellowship can be found at RCGP fellowship

If you are unsure about any part of fellowship or want to know more about the process contact the Severn Faculty for more information.

The faculty actively encourages its members of 5 years plus standing to consider putting themselves forward for Fellowship. We have a Faculty Fellowship Committee (FFC) within the faculty, coordinated by our Provost, Dr Jill Wilson who is also the Fellowship lead. The FFC can offer advice and support through the Severn Faculty office.


Local Events for GPs

The Bristol Medical-Chirurgical Society aims to promote the exchange of views between health professionals through education and dialogue. Members consist of doctors and dentists, GPs and Secondary Care Specialists, medical students and retired Professors. For more information or contact the Society Administrator, Sam Walker: admin@bristolmedchi.co.uk


How to survive as a new GP

Starting out as a newly qualified GP (NQGP) is exciting - the start of a stimulating and rewarding career. But it can also be tough. Overwhelmed, unsupported, isolated; these are words sometimes mentioned by those who have left their training posts and start out as independent general practitioners. What should be the beginning of an inspirational and fulfilling journey can be tainted by clinical uncertainty, time pressures and a lack of sense of direction.

Written in association with the Severn School of Primary Care, the RCGP Severn Faculty, Concord Medical Centre and the RCGP First5 Programme, 'Surviving as a New GP' is a concise new 33 page guide, largely written by a team of local GPs, that hopes to bridge this gap by covering the following five key areas:

  1. Learning about yourself
  2. Getting to know your practice
  3. Planning ahead and taking action (including appraisal and revalidation)
  4. Mentoring
  5. Looking after yourself

Practices that want to support NQGPs better, but don't know where to start, will also find much of the material useful. To learn more, download your free copy now


Contact us

RCGP Severn Faculty

c/o UWE Glenside Campus

Rooms 2H001/2

Blackberry Hill

Bristol  BS16 1DD (this office is temporarily closed)

Email: Severn@rcgp.org.uk

Opening hours

Faculty hours: 08:00 – 16:00 Monday to Wednesday, 08:00 – 14:15 Thursday and 08:30 – 16:15 Friday

Your local Faculty Administrator is Jane Lohmann       Tel: 0203 188 7714
Your local Faculty Events Administrator is Kelly Bush  Tel: 0203 188 7715

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Don’t forget to follow us on social media for the latest updates:  

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