Introduction Simulation is increasingly being recognised as an attractive tool to support endoscopic training. Standard training has been associated with certain limitations; longer procedural times, cost, unpredictable pathology and occasionally patient dissatisfaction. Use of endoscopic simulators, has been suggested as alternative training method. Although advocated by national and international endoscopy societies (BSG, ASGE), when and how it should be incorporated into endoscopic training is still debated. A recent Cochrane review, suggested it was of most benefit to novice endoscopists.
An endoscopic simulation programme has been established at the Royal Free simulation centre since 2009. Completion of the course is not a formal speciality training programme requirement. Enrolled trainees progress through a staged curriculum with frequent assessment of their endoscopic competencies. How junior trainees use this resource was explored in this study.
Methods All trainees that have undertaken endoscopic training at the simulation centre between 2009 and 2012 were invited to complete an anonymous online questionnaire. Subsequently a targeted focus group was conducted; participants included trainees and simulation centre trainers.
Results 62 trainees were invited to complete the survey, with a response rate of 48% (30/62). The majority of trainees (93%; 28/30) completed the course during evenings or at weekends. 77% self-funded the course and just 7% obtaining study leave. Trainees enrolled on the course for a median of 2 months. 52% (15/29) were studying for a postgraduate exam while completing this course and 1 in 5 trainees commuted from outside the M25 to attend the course. A third of trainees were undertaking a rotation in Gastroenterology when they enrolled on the course and 82% (22/27) wanted to pursue a career in Gastroenterology. 68% (17/25) reported they were actively applying for Gastroenterology or Surgical registrar training posts in the next 12 months. Frequently sited course outcomes by trainees included; greater familiarity with endoscopic equipment and technique, an opportunity to gain basic endoscopic skill training as a foundation doctor or SHO, improved individual time management skills and was an opportunity for trainees to demonstrate a relevant example of commitment to speciality.
Conclusion Trainees completing this course sited a broad range of perceived learning outcomes. In addition to gaining endoscopic skill training, completing the course enabled trainees to develop their interpersonal skills and demonstrate commitment to speciality. This study supports junior doctors undertaking simulated endoscopic training.
Disclosure of Interest None Declared
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