National Medical Director's Clinical Fellow Scheme

National Medical Director's Clinical Fellows 2015-16

The National Medical Director’s Clinical Fellow Scheme for doctors in training in England is sponsored by Professor Sir Bruce Keogh and managed by FMLM.

The scheme has been established to fast track and support those doctors in training who present with the clearest potential to develop as medical leaders of the future.

National Medical Director's Clinical Fellow Scheme

What is it?

The scheme provides doctors in training with a unique opportunity to spend 12 months in a national healthcare-affiliated organisation outside of clinical practice to develop their skills in leadership, management, strategy, project management, and health policy.

Originally established in 2005 as the Clinical Advisor Scheme by the Chief Medical Officer for England, it initially offered just one place each year. In 2011 the scheme was renamed to reflect its sponsorship by the NHS medical director for England and its management by FMLM. The scheme has expanded to include host organisations in both the North and South of England, and now has close links to similar fellowship schemes in Wales and Scotland. To date, more than 70 doctors in training have participated in this scheme.

What it means for junior doctors

Clinical fellows have the opportunity to work with senior leaders to fast track their leadership skills and experience in a diverse range of organisations.

What it means for organisations

Organisations have the opportunity to be part of a prestigious scheme to develop a growing pool of future medical leaders who will go on to shape healthcare in this country.

How it works

Candidates may apply for a place on the scheme during the recruitment period held from December to February each year. Shortlisted candidates are interviewed in February and successful applicants are seconded from their current NHS trust to take up a fellowship role for 12 months, starting 1 September, as an out‐of‐programme experience (OOPE, or equivalent).

The scheme is open to doctors in training from all specialties who have completed both years of foundation training by the start of the fellowship, commencing 1 September, each year. Candidates are eligible to apply providing they have full GMC registration and do not expect to gain CCT around or before 1 September of the year they are applying. General Practice ST3 trainees with CCT before or around 1 September of the year they are applying are eligible to apply.

The organisations currently in the scheme are: BMJ, BUPA, Care Quality Commission, Faculty of Medical Leadership and Management, General Medical Council, Health and Social Care Information Centre, Health Education England, Macmillan Cancer Support, Monitor, NHS England, NICE, Public Health England, Royal College of Physicians, Royal College of Psychiatrists, St Andrews Healthcare, Royal College of Surgeons England, Trust Development Authority.

Applications for 2016/17 have closed

Find out more about shortling and interviews

The class of 2015-16

Find out who they are and how they came to be on the scheme.

Alumnus scheme

The network for past fellows, see who they are and find out what they're up to now.


Check out the most commonly asked questions about the scheme.

History of the scheme

Find out more about how the scheme was launched and what was achieved throughout the years.


Audio/Video 08 January 2016 939

Clinical Fellow Scheme – what’s it all about?

“It is just the most fantastic year, definitely the best of my career to date" - Dr Jemma Batte. FMLM hosted a webinar with four fellows from the current cohort of the National Medical Director’s...
11 December 2015 813

Clinical Fellows Scheme – being part of the leadership community

The National Medical Director’s Clinical Fellow Scheme offers a variety of experiences for fellows working within healthcare affiliated organisations such as NHS England, royal colleges, Macmillan...
22 November 2015 2,187

Clinical Fellow Scheme – What’s in it for the fellows?

Thirty-one junior doctors joined this year’s cohort of clinical fellows, all based in London, Leeds and Manchester, but with close links with fellows in Scotland and Wales.
20 August 2015 1,516

In a class of their own – the new intake for 2015/16

In September, FMLM welcomes the 31 fellows forming the fifth cohort of the National Medical Director’s Clinical Fellow Scheme in England.  This cohort, the largest to date, was appointed from 145...
Webinar 16 January 2015 463

Clinical Fellows Scheme 2015/16 - what's it all about?

The applications for the 2015-16 National Medical Director's Clinical Fellow Scheme went live at the end of 2014.
Article 16 October 2014 91

After Mid Staffordshire - From acknowledgement, through learning, to improvement

For many readers, the story of the quality of care at Mid Staffordshire NHS Trust in the UK from 2005 to 2009 will need little introduction.
15 July 2014 287

The Scottish Clinical Leadership Fellows' scheme

The Scottish Clinical Leadership Fellows’ scheme began in January of this year with the appointment of two fellows to NHS Education for Scotland and to the Scottish Government’s Health and Social...
07 April 2014 326

National Medical Director’s Clinical Fellows present at NHS England’s Health and Care Innovation Expo

Over 100 FMLM members were given complimentary tickets to this conference through the faculty, providing them with the unique opportunity to attend this inspirational conference and to hear from the...
Audio/Video 07 March 2014 1,473

Looking to the future, Clinical Fellow Scheme 2014-15

The current Clinical Fellows talk about the scheme and detail what's in store for 2014-15 fellows at their host organisation.
Webinar 18 December 2013 3,971

National Medical Director s Clinical Fellow Scheme - what is it about?

Answering the questions potential applicants need to know before applying.