I had the pleasure of mentoring 2 excellent foundation year 1 trainees through an academic anaesthesia foundation post during 2014. Stephen Ali and Joseph Bell were part of the Anaesthetic Department from January to August 2014, in an academic anaesthesia post which allowed them 2 days in academic medicine and 3 days in Intensive Care Medicine/Anaesthesia each week.
Both were principally involved with the FLICS project – this was an NHS led project comparing The ROTEM Fibtem assay to Klauss Fibrinogen in Cardiac Surgery. They learned how to use and interpret the point of care test, consent and recruit patients and collect data to a very high standard. Stephen submitted the interim data to the Royal College of Anaesthetists Annual Congress in Cardiff where he was runner up in the research presentations. He also presented at the Association of Cardiothoracic Anaesthetists in London. A truly successful time for them.
Academic medicine at this stage of training is no small undertaking and was hugely supported by the help of the excellent anaesthetic trainees Nian Baban and Laura Jackson as well as the nurses in cardiac ICU. So with mutual support and understanding academic work and clinical work can co exist productively – this project is a good example of that.
We need to promote foundation training in anaesthesia. Anaesthesia never has been a mandatory part of the current undergraduate curriculum in Cardiff. Medical students and Foundation trainees have to seek us out. This academic post is one of the few experiences of anaesthesia at UHW and it should be recommended and promoted. Please consider interesting projects you may have to encourage these highly motivated and bright trainees to become part of our speciality. These posts are co-ordinated by Professor Hall.
Dr Caroline Evans
Consultant Cardiothoracic Anaesthetist