Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland Coláiste Ríoga na Máinleá in Éirinn

RCSI announces 2013/2014 Professional Development Programme for NCHDs

21 August 2013

The 2013/2014 Professional Development Programme (PDP) for non-consultant hospital doctors (NCHDs) working in the fields of surgery and emergency medicine, taking place at the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland (RCSI), has been announced with this year's programme offering a newly expanded choice of technical skills and human factors modules. Eligible NCHDs have until Friday, 20th September to enrol on the Programme.

The Programme, which is now in its third year, is commissioned and funded by the Health Service Executive (HSE) to facilitate NCHDs within the public health service, who are not on training schemes, to maintain their professional competence in line with Medical Council requirements and provides a structured means of achieving 20 external CPD credits. Approximately 500 NCHDs are eligible for enrolment on the Programme and the HSE will cover the cost of participation for NCHDs who meet the criteria and enrol by the 20th September deadline.

The programme includes technical skills modules and human factors training. New to the technical skills module in Surgery this year is the ‘Fundamentals of Breast Surgery', ‘Surgical Management of Trauma after ATLS' and Prosthetics and Orthotics in Orthopaedics'. Additional technical skills modules include basic and advanced surgical skills courses aimed at SHOs. Advanced courses in endoscopy and laparoscopic surgery are targeted at senior registrars. Vascular and urology surgeons will be offered the opportunity to enhance their operative skills with surgery techniques courses tailored to these specialities.

For Emergency Medicine there is a full day courses dedicated to airway management and resuscitation. In the human factors module, a new course ‘Medical Error and Patient Safety' has been added.

Professor Oscar Traynor, Director, National Surgical Training Centre, RCSI, said: "The RCSI Professional Development Programme assists NCHDs to satisfy their professional competence requirement. The programme provides highly relevant courses for emergency medicine and surgery NCHDs at both SHO and Registrar level, to equip them with invaluable skills and technical expertise needed in order to excel in their speciality."

Mary-Jo Biggs, Medical Education and Training, HSE said: "The Professional Development Programme provides a structured curriculum for NCHDs to achieve up to 20 CPD credits per annum, with a choice of modules tailored for both surgery and emergency medicine now available. We strongly encourage all eligible NCHDs who are not currently on a training scheme to enrol on the Programme by 20th September in order to avail of the educational activities which the HSE is supporting."

The Professional Development Programme is open to NCHDs who are registered on the General Division or Supervised Division of the Register of Medical Practitioners maintained by the Medical Council. NCHDs must hold the 2010 NCHD contract and be working within the public health service. To successfully enrol on the Professional Development Programme, applicants must have paid the annual Professional Competence Scheme Fee for 2013/2014.

Since the 1st of May 2011, it has been mandatory for all doctors to register with a Professional Competence Scheme (PCS) run by one of the postgraduate training bodies. RCSI has been designated by the Irish Medical Council to run PCS for Surgery and Emergency Medicine.

For further information on the Professional Development Programme delivered by RCSI visit The Programme runs until June 2014 and the timetable up to December 2013 is now available on