The Resident Support Unit (RSU) provides a range of administrative and support services exclusively for junior medical staff.
This section explains how and why you might need to interact with RSU and vice versa. It covers a number of key process and policies, of which all junior doctors should be aware.
RSU is located near the Resident's Common Room on Level 1, A Block. Office Hours are 8am to 4:30pm.
For details of the personnel in RSU, see Who's Who.
For more information about pay issues, see Getting Paid.
Direct contact with RSU staff is encouraged, either face-to-face or by phone. Many issues can be solved by taking the time to talk. All JMOs are advised to ensure that an email record of interactions with RSU is maintained. When emailing RSU, there are two generic accounts which should be used in preference to staff member's individual health emails.
WSLHD-RSUrosters@health.nsw.gov.au should be used for all roster enquiries.
WSLHD-RSUinfo@health.nsw.gov.au should be used for all other enquiries.
When RSU emails you, they will always use your health account. It is a breach of NSW Health policy to use a personal email account for official work matters. It follows from this that you must regularly check your health email account as a requirement of your employment.
RSU Management of Inquiries - Interns and RMOs
RSU Management of Inquiries - SRMOs, Registrars and Fellows
Communication Within The Hospital
Paging remains the mainstay of internal communication. A page is made from internal phones by dialing:
* 2 page number *
More detailed instructions about paging can be downloaded below.
Everything You Need to Know about Paging
In relation to rosters, RSU performs the following functions:
- Collects rosters pertaining to junior doctors from each clinical department for the purpose of ensuring accurate payment. You can only be paid correctly if RSU has the most accurate and up-to-date version of your roster and is aware of any variations. Forms for notification and approval of shift swaps are found below.
- Writes the majority of rosters pertaining to Interns and RMOs, with the exception of ED and O&G. In particular, RSU creates and publishes the general ward after-hours shift and relief roster each term, between two and four weeks before the commencement of term. This roster identifies the after-hours staffing for evening, night and weekend shifts on the general wards. This will impact most ward-based Interns and RMOs, as well as relievers. View a sample here.
- Collates the above information and distributes duty rosters on a daily basis. The daily duty roster identifies the available after-hours ward and on-call junior doctors. These rosters are widely distributed via email each day in the early afternoon. A hard copy can be obtained from RSU or switchboard and a soft copy is stored on the Westmead ED intranet site. View a sample here.
Key documents pertaining to rostering, after-hours shift responsibilities and shift swaps can be found below. The Guide for JMO After hours shifts highlight how general ward after hours is structured for JMOs, how the roster works and what to expect on an after hours shift.
You are required to notify the hospital as early as possible if you are sick. You should ensure that personnel on your clinical unit are aware and notify both your Registrar and RSU. If calling in sick after-hours, please notify switch on (02) 8890 5555. Following this you are required to complete a leave application form and submit to RSU. Any sick leave of more than two consecutive days requires a medical certificate. Sick leave will only be paid for two days until receipt of the certificate.
ADOs accumulate at one day per calendar month and should be rostered. If not rostered and you require an ADO, you should first approach the team you are working with. Please note that relief cover is usually unable for individual ADOs. You must notify RSU of any ADOs taken by completing a leave application form.
Leave for Interns, RMOs and SRMOs is assessed, approved and rostered by RSU. For doctors streamed to a department or sub-specialty, your leave form must be approved by your Head of Department or their delegate and submitted to RSU. Leave forms for BPTs and Surgical Skills SRMOs must be signed by the Clinical Superintendent in Medicine or Surgery, or their delegate, respectively. Annual leave cannot be paid without an approved leave form.
All requests for study leave are to be submitted using the leave application form. The process of approval is the same as annual leave, however study leave must be accompanied by evidence of sitting an exam, attending a course, or presenting at a conference. All types of leave requests are considered, however they can only be granted if adequate cover is available. Please note that study leave is only available to PGY2s and above.
Leave Application Form
In order to avoid disappointment, please do not book flights or accommodation or pay for courses until your leave application has been formally approved in writing.
RSU is responsible for allocating terms for Interns, RMOs, General and Critical Care SRMOs and does so annually in October to November each year. All pre-vocational trainees are asked to formally nominate their term preferences, usually by late September. Terms are allocated as equitably as possible, based on term preference and career direction. All Interns and RMOs will be allocated to one relief term and at least one ED term. The remaining three terms are allocated as closely to the individual's preferences as can be achieved. Historically, it has been the case that once everybody's first two preferences have been allocated, most of the popular terms will have been exhausted.
In general terms, RSU will be as flexible as possible regarding proposed term swaps. In particular, swaps with JMOs outside of the network are usually supported providing the other hospital's administration is in agreement. Term swaps involving relief terms may be problematic if leave arrangements have already been made. Term swaps between Interns and RMOs can also be problematic. They can only be approved by RSU if the Intern is swapping into a term which is accredited by HETI for PGY1s and if the Head of Department is willing to endorse the change in the seniority of staffing. When a term swap is proposed, it has to be documented and signed by both parties. Email confirmation will be provided once the swap has been approved.
Term Swap Form
Medicate Provider Number
A provider number entitles doctors to charge services to Medicare and to refer to other practitioners. As an hospital JMO you are not allowed to bill Medicare, but there are circumstances in which you may need to write referrals. Provider numbers are site-specific, so even if you have an existing number from your previous location, you need to apply for a new one if you are changing hospitals.
PBS Prescriber Number
A prescriber number allows you to prescribe medications on the Pharmaceutical Benefits System (PBS). Most of your prescribing will be done in the hospital which does not involve use of the PBS, excepting in rare circumstances. On occasions you may be required to write an external PBS script, especially from ED.
Apply for a provider and prescriber number here.
Further information about the PBS can be found at the PBS website
All employees are required to have an employee health clearance prior to commencing work at Westmead Hospital. This is done by the Staff Health Clinic. If medical officers are given conditional clearance because they have not had a Hepatitis B vaccination and serology or tuberculosis testing, they can make an appointment with staff health by ringing (02) 9840 3649, providing they are formally on the staff. The staff health clinic does not provide emergency or any other medical care.
It is essential that all doctors have a personal General Practitioner and do not self-prescribe. Requests for corridor consultations and issuing of scripts should be politely refused. Any such casual consultation and offer of advice by medical officers is not appropriate or part of your duties.
For treatment of urgent personal health conditions, attend the ED. Staff members should not attend the ED requesting to see particular doctors.
There is no fixed dress requirement at Westmead Hospital, but you should use your common sense and wear clothing that is safe and appropriate, guided by your patient's expectations of a health care professional.
Uniforms or scrubs are not mandatory for doctors and will usually not be provided by the hospital. However, you may wish to purchase them, particularly if working in the ED or on after-hours shifts. Reasonably priced uniforms can be purchased through the government supplier, Total Apparel Management System (TAMS). You can search for TAMS on the intranet and you will be directed to a login page where you can lodge an order, or go through the following link: https://www.adaorders.com.au/DefaultHSS.aspx
Another private provider you may wish to consider is "Infectious - Medical Scrubs Australia", which produces scrubs with the Westmead ED logo. Orders can be placed through or www.infectious.com.au/westmead-ed
JMOs are assigned parking in P1, the large multi-story car park on the corner of Darcy Road and Institute Road and P12 and 13, the ground level open car parks on Dragonfly Drive, accessed via Mons Road.
Westmead Hospital Parking Map
Parking is organised though Secure Parking and linked to your staff ID badge which allows you access to the car park. You will need to authorise your parking fee to be deducted from your fortnightly pay through completion of this form
. Parking is not managed by the Security Department.
Please note that if you require an escort to the car park at any time, you should contact Security on 57625 for assistance.
The current cost of parking is $23.20 per week for full-time staff and $15.50 for part-time staff. JMOs who are rotated out of Westmead will need to suspend their deductions for the duration of the term and resume them upon their return through completion of this form
JMOs wishing to avoid parking fees will find that public transport is a better option than hoping to find street parking.
For parking enquiries, contact Secure on (02) 8890 3739, or visit the Secure Parking Office located next to the pharmacy at the main entrance.
Lockers can be arranged through RSU. You will be issued with a locker, padlock and key after paying a $50 refundable deposit at the Cashiers Office and providing a copy of the receipt to RSU. When returning the padlock and key to RSU, you will receive a form to present to the Cashiers Office to collect your deposit. There is a $10 non-refundable annual fee for the upkeep of the lockers, payable to the Cashiers Office. Westmead Hospital takes no responsibility for loss or damage to personal items stored in lockers.
The hospital has overnight rooms for on-call registrars or any staff member who has unexpectedly worked late and needs to sleep at the hospital. The rooms are located in E Block, Level 2, next to the Executive Offices. Access to the rooms can be obtained through RSU within working hours and Security outside of hours. It is important that you return the key to the RSU as soon as practicable after you have finished so the room can be made available for your colleagues.