Emma Reay asks if it’s time to formalise return to work procedures for trainees
Returning to work as a surgical trainee after a period of absence can be a daunting experience and one many of us will encounter over the course of our training. A prolonged period away from clinical work can happen for a variety of reasons such as maternity leave, out of programme research, and after illness. Although there are generic guidelines for returning to work written by many of the postgraduate deaneries and the BMA, there has yet to be a formalised return to work programme for surgeons in training. Currently, there are no specific guidelines laid down by the surgical colleges or trainees associations which are specifically tailored for surgical trainees.
Gael MacLean explains why planning ahead is the key to reducing the stress of returning to training
Returning to surgical training after a period of absence can be a stressful experience. This is often exacerbated if the time away has been prolonged such as maternity leave or as a result of sick leave. My interest in this area stems from the difficult transition I experienced when returning to work after maternity leave as an ST4 in general surgery. Talking to other colleagues, I realised I was not alone in my experiences.
Trainees have voiced their opinion on the quality of training in the Joint Committee on Surgical Training annual survey
The JCST trainee surveys, developed in conjunction with the Confederation of Postgraduate Schools of Surgery, have been running since 2011. Trainees in most surgical specialties currently answer a 20-question survey, whilst core and Paediatric Surgery trainees answer a more detailed survey with questions relating to curriculum delivery. The surveys are accessible through the ISCP and trainees are requested to complete one for each training placement they undertake.
With a growing number of conferences seeking to attract surgical trainees, ASiT ask how does today’s trainee choose where to spend their money?
Many surgical training curricula have been updated for 2013. They require trainees to demonstrate clinical progression and up-to-date knowledge, alongside active participation in audit, research and leadership activities for both portfolio progression and, ultimately, revalidation. The challenge for the surgical trainee is coordinating all these skills and learning how to excel in each.
After winning the RCSEd’s Student Surgical Skills Competition, Belfast medical student Jamie Clements flew to Hamburg this summer to claim his prize – a visit to the European Surgical Institute
With medical school exams over for another year and the impending tranquility of a summer break fully palpable, I found myself packing my dog-eared copy of Burkitt’s Essential Surgery and enforcing a temporary hiatus on my newly established addiction to House MD for a journey to one of Europe’s leading centres for medical education, the European Surgical Institute (ESI) in Hamburg.