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Advanced Training in Anaesthesia

Image of anaesthetists discussing various monitor readingsThis page is designed to help you navigate through the Wessex Advanced Training Programme. Hopefully it will answer all your questions but if in doubt, do ask!

The point of contact in your trust should be your College Tutor or Educational Supervisor, who will be able to point you in the right direction.

Advanced Training Curriculum

You can go online to find the RCoA Curriculum for Advanced Level Training (Annex E).

RCoA Guide to Advanced Training

The RCoA guide to the Advanced Training programme can be found online.

Hospitals on the rotation

During your ST6/7 training you will rotate through a number of hospitals within Wessex. There are more details about the eight departments involved in the School of Anaesthesia and which units of training can be achieved in the documents below.

Advanced Training Hospital Sites (pdf)

Advanced Training Useful Information

The Advanced Training Programme is designed to be more flexible to allow more senior trainees to target their training towards their career aspirations whilst gaining further experience in the anaesthetic sub-specialities as part of the Spiral Learning process. The organisation of modules is dependent on your requirements and future career plans..

Post FRCA Teaching

The Post FRCA Teaching Days are run five times/year. They are designed to cover both the clinical and non-clinical teaching required by the RCoA curriculum. The days are delivered by all departments within Wessex on a rotation system. The mornings consist of clinical lectures and the afternoons of non-clinical lectures. Although the Post FRCA programme is co-ordinated by a team of trainees, the organisation of each day is delivered by trainees within the relevant NHS trust.

Final ARCP and CCT

Following your Final ARCP the School will notify the RCoA that you are eligible to apply for entry to the Specialist Register with a CCT. The GMC will then invite you to make an application roughly four months before your completion of training date.

Pink BracketPlease note that the award of a CCT and inclusion on the Specialist Register are not automatic procedures; you are required to apply for your CCT or CESR(CP) certificate. 

Details of the Specialist Register application process can be found at the RCoA website, where you will also be able to find the notification of CCT completion form you will need to bring to your Final ARCP with training date completed.

The indicative timeframes for Advanced Training Units in Wessex are as Follows:

Advanced Training modules available

It is vital that all single specialty trainees can account for 12m of Advanced Training in ST6/7.

Annex E sets out the requirements for Advanced Training - we recommend you read the sections relevant to your interests. We have been asked for some guidance on completing certain units.

The messages are:

  • Plan early and liaise with the local College Tutors and TPD regarding your Advanced plans - we will be asking this at your annual education review/ARCP with the TPD.
  • The TPD is more than happy to discuss your training programme at any time
  • Focus on the Core Clinical Learning Outcomes and the Learning Outcomes
  • Training is competency based, with a time element (often a range) as per Annex E
  • If a trainee wishes to do 12m General Duties the expectation is that at least 2 will be attained (3-4 is common)
  • Wessex the agreed specific times currently are:

Cardiac - 12m

Thoracic  - 6m (this will be signed off as "General")

Peri operative medicine - 6m

Neuro - 6m

Paeds - 6m or 12m (the latter for those wishing to pursue tertiary career)

Obs - 6m split between UHS and PHT or Poole

Airway & maxillo-facial, head & neck combined - 6m 

Regional and orthopaedics combined - 6m

Pain - 12m

Other units can be discussed locally as long as they are in keeping with Annex E

If you are currently within a unit and have agreed a different timescale,


Advanced Training is usually one year in duration and is aimed at preparing you for consultant practice. Trainees are able to specialise in neuroanaesthesia, cardiothoracic anaesthesia, obstetric or paediatric anaesthesia if their career aspiration is to practise in a tertiary referral centre. For those trainees who wish to follow a generalist’s career in a district general hospital or equivalent, they will complete one year of general duties. A trainee may specialise in a single area in general duties (eg, obstetrics) or complete a number of units.

In preparation for consultant practice, the learning is focussed on building expertise in the chosen area of practice and greater exposure to the professional competencies such as leadership, team working and management.

Early discussion with the Training Programme Director is advisable. Every effort will be made to accommodate trainees' preferences, but some modules can become oversubscribed and may need to be allocated competitively.


The following are available at Wessex

Cardiac Anaesthesia

Advanced training in cardiac anaesthesia is possible for six-12 months during ST6-7 to gain further training and experience, including echocardiography. This module is based in Southampton and for further information please email Dr James Montague - .

Obstetric Anaesthesia

Advanced training in obstetric anaesthesia is available in ST6/7. Training is based at three trusts in Wessex (Portsmouth, Poole and Southampton). For more information or if you wish to express an interest in doing the module, please email Dr Samantha Wilson.

Paediatric Anaesthesia

Advanced paediatric training consists of either six- or 12-month posts. The 12-month post consists of paediatric anaesthetics (nine months) and PICU (three months). For more information or if you wish to express an interest in doing the module, please email Dr Andy Cowan.


If you are interested in advanced training in neuroanaesthesia, please discuss with the Programme Director and the College Tutors at Southampton, who can put you in touch with the relevant consultants. For further information please contact Dr Emma Taylor

Pain Medicine 

For those who wish to sub-specialise in pain medicine there are optional higher and advanced modules available. For further information please e-mail Dr Dominic Aldington .


Advanced training for 6 months in Thoracic Anaesthesia is available at UHS. There is no specific sign off for this, so Advanced General will be achieved. Please liaise with UHS College Tutor or Dr Leo Krivskiy

Higher ST5-7

  • Optional one to three months
  • Essential for all trainees who wish to progress to advanced pain medicine training
  • Recommended for trainees considering a future consultant post with an interest in acute pain medicine.


Advanced ST5-7

Optional 12 months (after completion of higher module). Advanced Pain Medicine training in ST5-7 is available within the Wessex School of Anaesthesia. All training is based within Queen Alexandra Hospital in Portsmouth. If interested, please email Dr Nick Campkin.


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