The first AUGISt two-day Masterclass in Upper GI surgery was held on October 1 and 2 in Nottingham. More than 70 trainees attended with more than 30 members of faculty comprising AUGIS Council members and national experts.
The course was divided into sessions according to the specialist areas covered within the Upper GI ISCP curriculum and included lectures, interactive question sessions and engaging MDTs with dynamic debate and delegate participation.
Thursday morning commenced with a fantastic talk from Mr Giles Toogood on the management of common bile duct injury and led the morning into management of emergencies within upper GI.
Benign HPB surgery was the theme of the next session and Mr Andy Smith’s talk on acute pancreatitis and non-gallstone, non-alcoholic pancreatitis was particularly well received.
The afternoon featured stage-specific options for trainees to participate in. More junior trainees attended a practical skills session supported by the course sponsors, Medtronic. This featured coaching for laparoscopic suturing and knot-tying in addition to instruction on the different energy devices used in surgery. Trainees approaching the FRCS exam had the pleasure of mock viva exam practice. Feedback has been especially positive regarding this particular session with many trainees requesting more time for vivas, despite a few initial anxious faces. We will certainly consider this when planning of future training courses.
The senior trainees joined together for a careers advice session featuring tips for fellowship and consultant post applications and interviews along with how best to establish consultant practice. Mr Beckingham, AUGIS President, spoke on planning a long and successful career and engaging in further professional activities such as society involvement. Following this, trainees split into small groups to review their CVs with consultant advice. This session received unanimous praise as a very informative and helpful aspect of the course with several trainees describing it as “outstanding”.
In the evening delegates and faculty joined together for a drinks reception and three-course dinner, even featuring a specially designed cocktail for the event!
Despite a very successful evening of socialising, the first session of Friday morning was well attended and started with a fantastic session on bariatric surgery with particularly helpful interactivity between faculty and delegates.
The second day of the course progressed with sessions focused upon pancreatic malignancy followed by malignant and benign oesophago-gastric teaching. The pancreatic MDT was highly informative and Mr Keith Roberts gave a fantastic talk on the management of pancreatic post-operative complications. The Nottingham oesophago-gastric consultants joined forces with Mr Nick Maynard and Mr Nick Hayes for an outstanding session on malignant OG disease with the third of the “Key trials” lectures being particularly well received. Delegates were given memory sticks containing uploaded PDFs of all the key papers discussed in these evidence-based talks.
Finally, the course ended with a short presentation from Mr John Abercrombie, RCSEng Council member, regarding the Shape of Training and the future of surgery careers followed by questions from delegates.
The course has received excellent feedback and our thanks go to the AUGIS organisational staff, Medtronic and especially all the faculty who gave their time to educate the upper GI surgeons of tomorrow.
Miss Elizabeth Elsey, Course Organiser, ST5 East Midlands North