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The Royal College of Psychiatrists Improving the lives of people with mental illness

Time out from training


This page explains arrangements if you’ve taken time out of training, either to do out of programme activities or through absence.

Out of  programme activities counting towards CCT require prospective College support and GMC approval. Therefore any applications for OOPT/R must be approved by the College and GMC before you start in the post.

OOPT - Time Out of Programme for Training

A trainee can seek prospective approval for clinical experience not otherwise available to them in their programme but which may contribute towards gaining the competencies needed in order to be awarded CCT/CESR(CP).

OOPR - Time Out of Programme for Research

A trainee can seek prospective approval for time spent undertaking research which will count towards the award of CCT/CESR(CP) where the training received is relevant to the curriculum.

OOPT / OOPR Process

  1. Gain prospective approval from your local Deanery/LETB, giving them as much notice as possible of the intended OOP.
  2. Apply for College support using the application form and guidance.
  3. Your application will be reviewed by the Quality Assurance Committee.
  4. If your application is successful, pass the College letter of support to your Deanery/LETB, who should apply for GMC approval before you begin the OOP period. The GMC will not approve applications without College support.

Applications should be sent to at least four weeks prior to QA Committee meeting dates. For 2018 these are:

  • 5 July 2018
  • 6 September 2018
  • 12 November 2018.

Time out of programme that is not to be counted towards training (OOPE and OOPC) do not require prospective approval by the GMC or RCPsych support. This is organised through the trainee's Deanery/LETB alone. Please also refer to the GMC's OOP Guidance, the Gold Guide and local guidance.

Acting Up

Trainees in their final year of Advanced Training wishing to act up in a Consultant post (AUC) outside of their home Deanery/LETB or in a location that has not been approved for training should follow the OOPT process as above following the AUC guidance.

If you’ve been absent

If you’ve been absent for more than 14 days within a 12 month period, the College and your Deanery will consult on whether your CCT or CESR CP date needs to be extended.

This will be covered as part of your annual review of competence progression meeting.

For full details on these arrangements, see the GMC’s position statement.

Please email us at if there are any extensions to your training, which mean your CCT or CESR CP date needs to be changed.


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