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British universities & Colleges Sport

For Doctors

Welcome to the BUCS Medical page.

Thank you for your interest in working as a doctor for BUCS. This page should hopefully include all of the information you need to know.
BUCS do not employ doctors on a full/part time basis, but instead provide cover for specific individual events throughout the domestic season.

What do we do?
BUCS is the National Governing Body for Higher Education sport in the UK. They organise the nationwide (& international) inter-university sports competitions which take place each year in over 50 sports. This consists of weekly team sports fixtures throughout the academic season culminating in national finals, alongside national Championships in individual sports some of which are the largest events of their kind in the UK.

BUCS provides doctors for sports with a higher risk of injury e.g. judo, rugby, hockey, boxing. We do not cover each and every one of the BUCS sports as there is not always a medical need but we currently cover about 20 sports. Physiotherapy cover is often provided alongside doctor provision. You may find, with team sports in particular, some universities will bring their own physiotherapist, however at most events our medical team is the only medical input.

BUCS appoints doctors (& physiotherapists) to provide event cover at events throughout the season. The majority of these are held between November and March, and may be weekdays and/or weekends. They are mainly single-sport events but there are 2 larger multi-sport events; the ‘BUCS Nationals’ in February and ‘BUCS Big Wednesday’ in March.

We have 3 tiers of paid work as a doctor, based on level of experience compared to the following criteria:

1. Consultant with extensive sports medicine & BUCS experience. Able to lead a medical team at a busy or multi-sport event. Should be FFSEM(UK).

Daily rate: <4 hours worked = £150, 4-8 hours = £225, >8 hours = £300

2. ST4+ Registrar or GP with considerable sports medicine & BUCS experience. Able to cover a single-sport event unsupervised, as well as supervise a less experienced doctor as necessary. Should be MFSEM(UK).

Daily rate: <4 hours worked = £125, 4-8 hours = £185, >8 hours = £250

3. ST1-4 with sufficient sports medicine experience to cover a single match unsupervised, or to help cover a larger event in a supervised environment. Should be on SEM training scheme or working towards MSc/Diploma in SEM.

Daily rate: <4 hours worked = £100, 4-8 hours = £150, >8 hours = £200

Tier of work & number of hours involved to be agreed in advance of the event between the doctor(s) and BUCS. Daily rate only paid if doctor working in their own time and not taking professional leave. Travel expenses can be claimed for public transport or car travel at a rate of 30ppm, up to a maximum of £100 (see more detailed travel expenses t&c below).

All doctors working at BUCS events must hold a valid, up-to-date Level II pre-hospital sports trauma course (eg. ICIS, AREA, SCRUMCAPS etc).

We also have 2 tiers of voluntary positions, where people without the above level of experience can gain further exposure to sports medicine and what is required of doctors working in that field:

4. F2 – ST3 with an interest in sports medicine, but insufficient experience to work unsupervised. Unpaid. At the expense of the doctor.

5. FY1 / Medical student with an interest in sports medicine. Purely observational. Unpaid. At the expense of the doctor/student.

People in levels 4 & 5, who have expressed an interest in working/shadowing at BUCS events may be given the opportunity to attend specific events (1-2 max per event), where they can shadow other members of the medical team, but need to cover their own travel & accommodation costs.

Our aim is that doctors starting at one of the lower levels, continue to work with BUCS as they progress through their career and work up through the levels. The supervision and support (even work based assessments / ‘supervised learning events’ if you are lucky) from more senior doctors at BUCS events should help to mentor you through this system.


Medical Equipment

For events deemed to have a risk profile high enough to need a doctor, BUCS will provide a fully equipped trauma bag, complete with an appropriate selection of emergency medications. Doctors in possession of their own trauma bag, with which they are more familiar, are welcome to use this if they prefer, however by providing a BUCS trauma bag, we can be confident all necessary emergency equipment will always be available. High-risk events will also have a Paramedic service on site, who will provide oxygen, entonox, a defibrillator, a scoop/extrication board and immobilisation splints.

It is recommended that doctors provide their own diagnostic equipment that they feel they may need (e.g. stethoscope, thermometer, oto/opthalmoscope, sphygmomanometer, blood glucose monitor, urine dip sticks etc).


Allocation of Doctors to events 

A list of sports events and dates are emailed out at the beginning of the academic year.  Doctors are asked to indicate their availability for these events at the beginning of the academic year and again at the beginning of the calendar year.  If you miss these deadlines, there may be additional events released throughout the season that you may apply for but there is no guarantee. 

Allocations will be made depending on experience and cover requirements of the event. Unsuccessful candidates may request to attend in a voluntary capacity to assist the appointed doctor. A ‘certificate of attendance’ for your portfolio will be provided after the event, upon completion of a feedback form.

If you are allocated to an event, please ensure you remember to book the time off.  When thinking about your availability for BUCS events please consider everything else you may have going on around that time e.g. exams, weekend shifts, staff changes at work, moving house etc.  It makes it very difficult to organise events if people drop out at short notice.  This has become an increasing problem in recent years and affects the service BUCS can provide.  We appreciate everyone has lives and work commitments outside BUCS and if unforeseen circumstances do occur please give us as much notice as possible that you cannot make the event. 

Terms and Conditions

Payment is made to Level 1-3 doctors only. Doctors deemed to be level 4-5 and medical students cannot be paid unfortunately, but we hope the experience you gain will help towards your career in the future.

Paid doctors: BUCS will pay a fee for medical cover provided, as well as travel expenses.  Accommodation will be provided if the event is over multiple days and considered too far to commute from home. This accommodation will be booked by BUCS.

BUCS will reimburse any consumables used, within reason, on provision of an invoice.



Experience No. of Hours Worked    
Level < 4 4 to 8 > 8
1 £150 £225 £300
2 £125 £185 £250
3 £100 £150 £200
4 or 5 Vol Vol Vol


 *Doctors in training schemes are encouraged to discuss BUCS event cover with their Educational Supervisor and gain approval for mid-week BUCS work be counted towards training, rather than require annual leave to be taken. This approach was originally discussed with the SEM SAC Chair (a previous BUCS CMO), who agreed that BUCS events are a valuable learning opportunity and a good chance to gain experience in multi-sports events and a variety of sports that can be difficult to get exposure to.

On occasions where professional leave has been taken, payment by BUCS is not able to be made, in accordance with the regulations regarding additional payment whilst in allotted training time.

Travel expenses may still be claimed. BUCS work at weekends will still be paid as per the normal rate.


We ask you to travel by the cheapest possible route wherever possible and book public transport as far in advance as possible and at least two weeks before the event in question. If it is deemed you have not booked any ticket sufficiently in advance, given when event dates were published and known, or have not made a reasonable effort find the cheapest fare, the amount reimbursed will be reduced accordingly. If you have any doubt, please contact BUCS before purchasing tickets.

1. BUCS will only reimburse costs for standard class train and air travel. All receipts or tickets must state the cost, start and destination locations, date of travel and date of purchase. Train ticket ‘Collection Receipts’ are not valid. 

2. If you need to travel by private vehicle, where possible, please share with others who may be travelling to the same event. If you have seats available, please let us know, as we may be able to put other volunteers in touch with you. 

3. BUCS will reimburse car travel at a rate of £0.30 per mile for private vehicle use. Only one reimbursement per vehicle is permitted. BUCS will not pay over £100 on any private vehicle travel claim, except in exceptional circumstances. BUCS reserves the right to request proof of travel for large claims. 

I would like to sign up!

If you are keen to work with BUCS Medical please register your details via the following link:

BUCS Medical Registration Document

If you require any further information on domestic events please contact the BUCS Medical team.

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