Introduction Previous national surveys of United Kingdom gastroenterology trainees (1-2) identified high rates of participation in research and Out Of Programme Experience (OOPE). Although 63% of trainees who have not done so intend of take time OOPE during training,3 the current state of attitudes to research remains unclear.
Method The aims were to determine: (1). Trainees’ experience of OOPE/research; (2). The perceived reasons for and against; and (3). Viewpoints on future career prospects. A Web-based national survey of trainees in Gastroenterology in the United Kingdom was carried out in 2015–16, supported by the BSG Research Committee.
Results 178 trainees completed the survey in 2016, of which 37.6% (n=67) were female. 88.1% (n=155) of trainees were in clinical training programmes, with 11.9% (n=21) in an academic training programme. 64.2% (n=106) had published a recent peer-reviewed journal article. 47.3% (n=78) had recruited patients to Clinical Research Network (CRN) adopted studies and certificate for Good Clinical Practice (GCP) was held by 63.0% (n=104). Of those doing research, trainees reported success rates of around 40% for competitive clinical research fellowships, but these were particularly higher in pump-priming and pre-funded posts (>80%). 84.5% (n=148) of trainees expressed a wish to undertake OOPE/research.
The most common reasons for undertaking OOPE were: (i) career prospects (75.2%); (2) academic interests (66.7%); and (iii) educational benefits (66.1%). The most common reasons for not undertaking OOPE were: (i) personal choice (83.2%); (ii) financial costs (69.7%); and (iii) family commitments (65.4%). 93.6% (n=161) of trainees feel that a higher degree will make them more competitive at consultant interviews. 88.9% feel that OOPE/research will continue to be important and 91.1% feel that developing regional trainee networks are important.
Conclusion The majority of gastroenterology trainees who responded express a desire to undertake OOPE and rates of participation in research/OOPE remain high. Efforts to do so include presentations, publications, GCP, hands-on research via CRN and regional networks (which many are interested in helping with). Despite smaller absolute numbers responding, gastroenterology trainees appear to be competitive for fellowships, especially if pump-primed. Efforts need to be made to tackle barriers to do OOPE/research but most trainees surveyed were positive about career and academic benefits including help in securing future consultant posts.
. Fogden EN, et al. Gut2009;58(Suppl I):A155 2. Disney B, et al. Gut 2011;60(Suppl I):A119. 3. BSG Trainees: 2014– Executive Summary
Disclosure of Interest None Declared