What is unrostered overtime?

From time to time you may be required to work outside of your rostered hours, in accordance with your Award and NSW Health policies.  This is referred to as unrostered overtime.

What are your obligations and why is it important to claim unrostered overtime?

You must ensure that NSW Health has an accurate record of all the hours you work.  This includes submitting a claim for any unrostered overtime you have worked in accordance with NSW Health's policies.  If you do not submit a claim for unrostered overtime, NSW Health will not be aware that you have been required to perform it.

Submitting a claim for all unrostered overtime you are required to work is important for a number of reasons:

  • to ensure you get paid for all the work that you are required to perform;
  • so your facility or district is aware of your workload and the workload within your department.  There are often changes that can be made to rosters and staffing levels if your facility knows about workload demands.  This is important for your wellbeing and for the safety of patients;
  • so that your facility or district can budget and resource your facility appropriately. 

If you do not submit a claim for any unrostered overtime you have been required to work, NSW Health will have no choice but to assume that you have not worked any unrostered overtime.

NSW Health relies on you submitting claims unrostered overtime for its ongoing determination of resourcing and budgeting requirements.

It is not a valid reason to fail to submit a claim because, for example, the previous JMO in a department did not claim overtime, you have been told by another JMO not to claim overtime, you believe it will reflect badly on you, or you have been told by any other clinical staff not to make a claim.   

Is prior approval required to work unrostered overtime?

Under the PD2019_027 Employment Arrangement for Medical Officers in the NSW Public Health Service Policy Directive prior approval of unrostered overtime is not required when that overtime is necessary as a consequence of the following (further information about each of which, including the specific circumstances required, can be found in the Policy Directive):

  • Medical emergency
  • Transfer of a patient
  • Extended shift in theatre
  • Patient admission/discharge
  • Completion of outstanding patient transfer/discharge summary
  • Late ward rounds
  • Mandatory training
  • Clinical handover
  • Hospital-based outpatient clinics

If you perform work outside of your rostered hours in any of the situations described in the Policy Directive and you submit a claim for that work, you will be paid for it. Outside of this, you are only authorised to perform the work if you obtain approval from one of the people designated by your facility prior to doing so. Your hospital/facility will have a process in place for you to obtain this approval, which will be communicated to you separately.

If you are ever unsure about how to seek approval to work unrostered overtime, please speak to your local JMO Unit who will be able to help. 

If you have any concern about claiming overtime, or you experience any difficulty in submitting a claim, or seeking or obtaining approval to work overtime, you should contact your facility's DMS or your JMO Manager in the first instance, who are aware of your obligations and can assist you.

If your rostered shift has finished and you are required to work unrostered overtime in circumstances which prior approval is not required in accordance with the Employment Arrangements for Medical Officers in the NSW Public Health Service Policy Directive, you may carry out the work.  If you are required to work unrostered overtime for any other reason and you do not obtain prior approval for that unrostered overtime, the work is not authorised to be performed by NSW Health and you must not carry it out. 

If you believe you have been required to work unrostered overtime for a reason other than those described in the Employment Arrangements for Medical Officers in the NSW Public Health Service Policy Directive but you did not seek prior approval to perform that work, you must notify your JMO Manager or Facility DMS and arrange a time to discuss.

How do I make a claim for unrostered overtime?

Where you have been required to work unrostered overtime, you are required to make a claim so that you are paid for all of the work that you have performed.

To make a make a claim for unrostered overtime, simply go to UROC either in StaffLink or by downloading the mobile app (Apple Store and Google Play search for UROC NSW Health).

Current as at: Monday 15 August 2022