Ongoing professional and personal development for consultants is a key part in our approach at UHS in terms of achieving the best quality for our patients and job satisfaction for the consultant staff. Recognising the need for senior doctors to be able to find opportunities, advice and help for both professional development, new challenges, and support during difficult times at work, the Doctors Development Unit (DDU) has been set up to meet this need.

DDU aims to provide:

New consultants

  • Provide particular support to new consultants during their first years in post.
  • 1:1 coaching for all new consultants
    • New consultants’ Teams group with the DDU team to provide a programme designed by new consultants themselves and the opportunity to meet peers virtually and, in due course, face to face.

All consultants

  • To provide easy access to coaching for all consultants considering or undertaking new leadership roles in the Trust. The Trust encourages coaching prior to and during times of transition for senior medical staff.
  • To provide 1:1 confidential “space” for all UHS senior doctors to review their situation and explore ways to reach personal goals or bring about change
  • To make clear the various ways that those requiring additional or urgent support can access help
  • To support those who are in difficulty managing work as it is, for whatever reason, to get through the hard times to get up and running again


  • Space to think - we have several medical coaches and access to non-medical coaches at UHS who are experienced in working with others to help them identify goals and plan approaches to situations and decisions they may be struggling to address
  • Opportunities – we plan to provide links to opportunities and resources for senior medical staff and, in due course, host workshops and courses we hope will be of interest.
  • Sources of help – links and suggestions for ways doctors might get help when facing a crisis are available by downloading this 'Getting Help' document.

If you would like to know more either for yourself, or your team, or have ideas about what you feel should be on offer, please drop us an email on

Educational Supervisor Courses

Educational Supervisor courses update courses are run in the Trust and can be booked through the internal Virtual Learning Environment. All consultants are required, in HEE Wessex, to do their first educational supervisor course at the Deanery. Details can be found on the HEE Wessex website.

The professional development portfolio at HEE Wessex also offers courses on leadership among other topics. Please refer to the Health Education England website for more details.