Anaesthetic Training Update - 26 June 2020

Published: 26/06/2020

ICM Training within the Anaesthetic CCT programme: Update regarding COVID cover

Many anaesthetists in training were reallocated to supporting critical care services during the COVID surge.  This was an important part of the UK-wide service response to the COVID pandemic and we would like to thank these doctors for their outstanding contributions during this time.  In most cases this will have resulted in a loss of anaesthetic experience.  We are keen to support the progression of all anaesthetists in training and minimise the consequences of this loss of activity,

Many will have spent a number of weeks working in critical care and gained important skills.  We would like to provide the following guidance to anaesthetists in training and trainers regarding the recognition of those skills:

  • Competencies gained during time spent reallocated to supporting Critical Care services may be counted towards the Completion of Unit of Training (CUT) form
  • In most cases we would not expect that the competencies achieved will be sufficient to complete units of training in ICM due to the specific nature of care provided during the COVID pandemic
  • The normal range of workplace-based assessments may not have been completed because of the particular working circumstances during the pandemic.  However, we will support schools in allowing anaesthetists in training to write a reflection on their experiences detailing the competencies that they have gained.  This may also cover the requirement to complete Multi Source Feedback, as is appropriate.  This must be counter-signed by a GMC recognised trainer within ICM
    • We would suggest this can be recorded on the Lifelong Learning platform as a Personal Activity (linked to the curriculum) with approval given via a relevant CUT form
  • We must also recognise that services will still need ongoing support and input from all medical staff including anaesthetists in training in order to provide appropriate patient care
  • However in recognition of the learning already completed, and progress made towards units of training, we will allow schools to allocate to future ICU placements in a flexible manner including either of the following options
    • Placements for less than 3 months
    • Allowing doctors working within ICM to undertake appropriate training lists in theatre during their ICM attachment whilst providing support for essential on call services

Decisions regarding how flexibility is enacted should be made by the School Board in liaison with ICM faculty tutors and service leads.  We are happy to provide additional advice and support to individual schools if requested.