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32 RCSI Annual Report 2012/13
Our leadership of the National Surgery Programme, under both Professor Frank Keane and
Mr Ken Mealy, continues to place the College in a central policy position to shape the future
delivery model. The programme is supported by a programme management office here in St
Stephen's Green. Despite resource constraints at site level, the programme is delivering real
results in critical areas, including average length of stay, bed days and theatre efficiency rates.
The upcoming launch of the Acute Surgery Model of Care document in RCSI by Minister of
Health, Dr James Reilly will be a highpoint of the year for the programme. The document follows
from the launch of the Elective Surgery Model of Care in 2011, and defines the core principles on
which an acute surgical service model should be built, as well as the key strategies to underpin it.
The 2012 launch of the National Office for Clinical Audit (NOCA) represented a major milestone
for both RCSI and the Surgery Programme. NOCA provides frameworks to facilitate sustainable
national clinical audit programmes in agreed specialties. Governance structures have been put
in place and progress made in the development of several audit streams. The team are currently
developing a five-year strategic plan, as well as working to accelerate supportive legal structures
to encourage widespread participation in audit.
The establishment of a Professional Competence Scheme (PCS) in 2012 to support the
professional competence needs of Surgical, Emergency Medicine (EM), as well as Sport and
Exercise Medicine practitioners was a significant development. Under the leadership of Professor
Sean Tierney, the scheme, in its second year of operation, recorded an increasing number of
participants to enable them to manage their professional competence requirements. We have
upgraded the PCS portal in response to user feedback and continue to develop its functionality.
Our Professional Development Programmes for both Surgical and Emergency Medicine (EM)
NCHD's provided structured clinical and behavioural courses to over 300 enrollees during year.
The programme was greatly enhanced with 11 new courses added across both Surgery and EM,
enabled by increased in-house faculty and staff. This programme is supported by the HSE's MET
unit and is designed to deliver the required external learning credits to enable NCHD's meet
their PCS requirements.
This year saw the launch of an updated Fellows and Members Programme, with an exciting menu
of benefits for our surgical alumni. The appointment of a new Associate Director for Alumni is an
important commitment by the College to build strong bridges with our alumni, both domestically
and internationally, for what we believe will be strong mutual benefit.
Research and Education
Our taught Master of Surgery (MCh) programme in Surgery continues to grow from strength
to strength. The MCh by module is the first in Ireland to incorporate a taught component in
addition to the research dissertation. Modules are designed to equip trainees with a versatile skill
set that will help them better meet the demands of higher surgical training. The programme's
multidisciplinary structure will enable participants to build an understanding of the complex
challenges and opportunities facing surgical professionals in the greater context of healthcare.
The introduction of a part-time, two-year programme has enhanced the flexibility of the MCh,
making it more attractive. More than 50 candidates are enrolled in this programme, with in
excess of 20 expected to graduate this year.
The leadership of RCSI in the delivery of Human Factors education has been further enhanced
with the success of our MSc/Postgraduate Diploma in Human Factors and Patient Safety. This is
an important recognition for RCSI's pioneering work in this critical area in medical training.
With the help of industry funding, we continue to support research fellows within the Department
who have produced valuable learnings to inform the structure of future surgical training modules.
Our research agenda will continue to be focused on supporting our educational agenda and how
to better deliver training.
The enhancement of our
leadership role for surgical
practice continues to be a major
priority for Surgical Affairs.
Pictured top (l-r): Candidates who received
Fellowships in Plastic Surgery at the July
2012 Postgraduate Conferring Ceremony:
Ms Siún Murphy, Ms Tereze Laing, Mr John
Curran and Ms Éilis Fitzgerald.
Pictured below: At The Charter Day
Celebrations is Professor Paddy Broe,
President (centre) with Professors Ralph
Dacey and Michael Solomon who were
awarded Honorary Fellowships.