Guidance on grading of posts for Quality Panels


Changes have been made to the Quality Panel process for the year 19/20. The grades that can be assigned to posts within a programme remain the same as in previous years, that is Excellent, Good, Requires Improvement and Inadequate.

The guidance on how to assign these to a specific post has been updated to reflect the use of lines of enquiry approach to questioning rather than the surveys previously utilised. The new descriptions also reflect on our experience over the last few years of how we interpret the grading to determine actions following the Quality Panel’s deliberations.

Generic Considerations to consider:

  1. Is it likely that the Quality Panel for your specialty deliberating in the north of HEESW i.e. Severn Deanery would reach the same conclusion as yourselves?
  2. It is acknowledged that issues identified will have a different emphasis and weighting on the grade between specialties. This is a consequence of emphasis in the curriculum and patient risk in different clinical environments.
  3. When a post is graded as requires improvement or inadequate the actions described by the panel need to be SMART. This will allow us to articulate to the provider of the post measures necessary to remedy the environment and allow us to determine whether this has been achieved.
  4. Urgent patient issues identified need communicating to the Quality Team in a timely fashion so that the provider can be notified and actions taken appropriately.


Guidance for Grades


The panel hasn’t identified any areas of concern from the lines of enquiry. There are one or more areas identified which ought to be communicated to others to highlight good practice and where practical these should be implemented in other training environments.


The panel is satisfied that the opportunities to achieve the curricular requirements necessary for a trainee progression are available within the post.  No serious patient safety concerns have been identified. There are no current concerns about continuing to place trainees in this training environment.

Requires Improvement

The panel has identified concerns that require resolution but do not make the post currently unfit for purpose. The expected timeframe for addressing concerns is within the next 12 months to enable the post to be continued to be utilised for training. In the next 12 months leaving a trainee in this post is not likely to compromise their progression nor significantly compromise patient safety (some adjustments may be necessary in the short term)


The panel has identified concerns that require resolution within a short time frame. The expectation is that the concerns will be addressed within a 3-6 month timeframe to enable the post to be continued to be utilised for training. During this period specific arrangements for individual trainees may be required to ensure that there is no adverse effect on their training.

If the concerns identified are not addressed within the 3-6-month timeframe then removal of the post from the training programme will be considered.
If urgent patient safety issues have been identified these will require definitive actions within a time frame consistent with the nature of the concern raised.