|Renewed energy for training|
|Thursday, 02 September 2010|
As a newly elected committee gets to work, Claire Simpson provides her first update as BOTA’s Publicity Representative
“With this new ‘Lost Tribe’ of doctors, BOTA is aiming to identify reasonable options for those members failing to progress through no fault of their own”This year, BOTA’s new President, Howard Cottam, aims to take us back to the membership with more roadshows, as part of a plan to breakdown perceived barriers between our membership and the committee. Members of the committee are also available to attend regional teaching sessions with the latest information and news from BOTA.
EWTD and the Temple Report
In May, Sir John Temple published his report into the effects of the European Working Time Directive (EWTD) on the quality of training. He noted that a contraction in the number of hours available for work and the need to maintain satisfactory service provision can result in a reduction in the opportunities for quality training. This is combined with a change in the pattern of working with juniors now tending to work full-shifts, but still having to cover the frequent gaps in the rota. In a joint statement, BOTA and ASiT commented that they were disappointed that relaxation of the EWTD is not addressed. BOTA and ASiT feel this is the most suitable solution for improving the time available to train, and would increase the amount of time that trainees have interacting with their trainers.
The coalition government has yet to make firm commitments to working hours for training doctors, but we await their plans with interest. None of the solutions suggested so far seem to address the improvement in training of the current cohort of junior doctors. BOTA will continue to support surgeons in training to develop new ways of training, and represent our members in discussions.
BOTA and JCST
Emily Baird, our new Vice President, now represents BOTA at meetings of the JCST, having taken over from Hussain Kazi. From August 2008, trainees using the ICSP website and OCAP for assessments have had to pay £125 per annum as a ‘trainee fee’. Introduced to support the Royal Colleges in support of funding of the ongoing costs of the JCST, the fee has always been controversial and aroused debate in BOTA. The cost of the fee has been fixed until August 2011, but with this date drawing near, assurances were sought regarding the ongoing, and potential increased cost to trainees. BOTA would be opposed to any increase in cost of the fee and, at the time of writing, it is hopeful that the fee will remain static.
Clarification is still sought as to whether membership of a Surgical College is essential to sit the FRCS. From the information available from the Intercollegiate Speciality Boards, it would appear that ‘it is a requirement of the four Royal Colleges of Great Britian and Ireland that Fellows, Associate Fellows and Members must be in good standing and have maintained payment of their subscriptions with their affiliated or designated College prior to sitting the examination.’ However, it may be that, as a required part of the Orthopaedic Curriculum, College membership might not be required. We hope to be in a position to clear up this confusion in the near future.
It should be highlighted to trainees that retrospective approval of Out of Programme Training (OOPT) is forbidden, and that a learning agreement is a requirement of OOPT. Ideally, this should be between the trainee and the OOPT educational supervisor, but if this is not feasible, then with the local educational supervisor. It has been reported to BOTA that some trainees are being prevented from undertaking fellowships prior to the CCT being awarded, and this is being looked into on several levels.
Junior members of BOTA
BOTA have recently extended their membership to include FY1 doctors upwards, and we will endeavour to support junior members as they apply for specialty training posts. Junior membership is £30 per year and juniors will be represented at committee meetings by the BOTA Junior Rep. Future plans include a junior members career day and annual junior members poster competition.
BOTA and SAC
It would appear that the application process for ST3 posts is to change in 2011. After applying to a central portal, candidates are able to apply to up to two deaneries. The interviews will be the same everywhere, consisting of five stations – manual skills, communication skills, clinical scenarios, review of CV/portfolio, research and audit. With three times as many trainees as there are places in higher surgical training, competition is going to be stiff. With this new ‘Lost Tribe’ of doctors, BOTA is aiming to identify reasonable options for those members failing to progress through no fault of their own.
Annual Conference 2011
After a successful Annual Conference at Carden Park in Cheshire, held in June, plans are afoot for next year’s conference. We aim to build on the high standard of lectures, and are considering continuing the workshops that were introduced this year.
The weekend will remain family-friendly, and is a great opportunity to catch up with friends. Put the weekend of 10-12 June in the diary now, and there’ll be information on the website once final arrangements have been made.
It is going to be another busy year, and BOTA will continue to represent its membership vocally. As always, BOTA welcome views and concerns of trainees. For up to the minute information, see the website at www.bota.org.uk.
The Academic Reps have had an extremely busy and successful year. Plans for 2010-11 include
BOTA-IOS Indo-British Travel Fellowship
Joining forces with the Indian Orthopaedic Society (UK), BOTA is pleased to introduce the development of a four-week travelling fellowship to recognised centres of excellence in India. Various sub-specialties are represented, with trainees being exposed to large volumes of complex pathologies.
BOTA-CeramTec Biolox Essay Prize
A £2000 prize is up for grabs for the best 1000-word essay discussing the use of ceramics as a bearing surface in hip arthroplasty. Entries should be either a clinical paper or a patient-based scientific paper. Kindly sponsored by CeramTec, this competition is open until 24 December 2010. Entries should be submitted to Wasim Khan, Academic Rep through the BOTA website.
BOTA/BORS at COMOC 2010
The research session at the Combined Orthopaedic Meeting was held on 16 September. This enlightening session of 12 presentations was concluded by David Murray delivering the keynote research lecture on Pseudotumours and Hip Resurfacing.
Medical Student Elective Bursary
This prestigious bursary is available to medical students taking part in electives that have an orthopaedic theme. With support up to £1000, we are looking forward to receiving entries from enthusiastic students from the autumn.
BOTA Committee update
The new BOTA Committee are settling into their posts after the election on 13 June at the AGM held at Carden Park.
Emily Baird, Vice President
Tressa Amirthanayagam, Treasurer
David Machin, Secretary
Simon Thomas, SAC
Claire Simpson, Publicity
Nick Ohly, Webmaster
Wasim Khan, Academic
Shariff Hazarika, Education
Matthew Cartwright-Terry, BMA
Stuart Bell, Scottish Rep
Benjamin Caesar, Past President
Gareth Roberts, Welsh Rep
Alexander Young, Junior Rep