Scottish Quality and Safety (SQS) Fellowship Programme

The Scottish Quality and Safety Fellowship Programme (SQS Fellowship)  is a lead level quality improvement and clinical leadership course managed by NHS Education for Scotland (NES), working in partnership with Healthcare Improvement Scotland and NHSScotland. 

SQS Fellowship Recruitment

Important message in response to the COVID-19 outbreak:

Recruitment for the 13th Cohort of the Scottish Quality and Safety Fellowship (SQSF) programme will open in February 2021, with interviews taking place in June 2021.

Further information, including recruitment pack, will be made available on the QI Zone in December 2020.

If you have any questions about applications to the Fellowship, or the programme itself, please contact the team at

About SQS Fellowship

The Scottish Quality and Safety Fellowship aims to develop and strengthen clinical leadership and improvement capability in NHSScotland. 

It is aimed at healthcare staff who currently undertake clinical practice and have a direct influence on improving the delivery of safe patient care, as well as staff in clinical professions (e.g. medical, nursing, pharmacy, AHP, healthcare scientists, ambulance) who do not currently deliver hands-on care but do have a role in improving patient care or safety. 

The main objectives of the programme are to develop clinical leaders capable of improving the Quality and Safety of health and healthcare for the people of Scotland and to enhance knowledge of the science and methods for improvement amongst clinicians who have enthusiasm, experience and skills to: 

  • support the development of safety programmes 
  • spread improvements both within their organisation and nationally 
  • establish a learning support network for transformational leadership for quality improvement 
  • complement wider improvement capacity building programmes within NHSScotland while supporting NHSScotland workforce development 
  • strengthen cooperation and collaboration with important overseas healthcare providers in Europe and beyond 

Participants are expected to undertake their own improvement project throughout the duration of the programme to consolidate their learning and apply skills from learning workshops and events into practice.  

The content of the programme will focus on Improvement theory, methods and tools including: measurement for improvement; human factors in safety; reliability, systems and design for safety; and person-centred care, as well as a toolkit for leading clinicians through change.  

There is the expectation that Fellows will be involved in supporting the Healthcare Quality Strategy at local and national level after completing the Fellowship programme. This may include mentoring, technical advice, teaching and other quality improvement activities. 

Details of the 2017 Fellowship programme: