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Individual Placement Description
Placement General Surgery
Year F1
Region North
Hospital(s) Western Isles Hospital, Stornoway
Main Duties of Placement

The Western Isles Hospital, Stornoway is a brilliant place to be an F1.  You get brilliant training in being a doctor and not just in your specialty. You will have lots of learning opportunities that allow great speciality and broad based experience.

General Surgery in the NHS Western Isles hospital has two operating theatres and a surgical ward. Under the Surgical Team there are 2 consultants, 1 permanent and 1 locum.

The hospital provides a variety of general surgical procedures and outpatient services. There is normally each week an elective list, several endoscopy lists, one minor ops list and several OPD clinics. There are also emergency operations and numbers will vary. The scope of the surgical procedures is often determined by the after care available; patients who may require HDU after theatre will be transferred to the mainland for theatre or will require retrieval after theatre if the operation cannot wait. 

Typical Work Pattern

Working Hours at NHS Western Isles Hospital are:

  • Short days 8:00-16:30
  • Long days 8:00-20:30.

There are hospital handovers at 8:00, 16:00 and 20:00. Weekends are long days only.

You will do a mix of long and short days, as the F1s are supernumerary during the evening and weekends. 

There are 12 junior doctor posts on the rota. The doctors named on the rota for the Surgical specialty take responsibility for that area with scope for juniors to work across specialties. 

Learning Opportunities

A large part of time at work you will be a “doctor” and you will be doing a lot less normal “F1 jobs”.

You will see lots of people in A&E and take GP referrals. You will have brilliant and varied training. You will have more (supported) responsibility than elsewhere and will often be making decisions like sending patients home from A&E.  You will be closely and clinically supported by the Consultants and other doctors who will give you the confidence to stretch yourself and become a better Doctor.

There is lots of high quality in-house formal and informal teaching including handover, consultant-led teaching on the ward, GI MDT, monthly Mortality and Morbidity Presentation Meetings, monthly Education Forums, monthly Combined Divisional Teachings, Clinical Skills Centre training, Royal Colleges Evening Updates webinar and ‘Attend Anywhere’ meetings – virtual tutorials or case based discussions with visiting mainland Consultants e.g. Respiratory via NHS Highland. 

Your NES contractual training via video conference is built into the rota so you can attend all NES teaching bleep free. 


Formal NES Deanery programme teaching (VC) is held weekly, in addition to high quality local educational teaching and training delivered in house. 

Unique Selling Points

The Hebrides is a most beautiful place, your colleagues are kind and supportive, the people are warm and generous, the work varied and stimulating. You will have a wonderful time at work with brilliant training and have plenty of time to explore the amazing island.

The GMC Quality Inspection in November 2017 gave the NHS Western Isles continued numerous green (good) flags in relation to education and training quality compliance.

You will work alongside and work directly with your Consultant every day. There is also in the hospital a Clinical Development Fellow and an A&E Specialist Doctor who will support you and enhance your training and experience.

There is a Quality Education Manager on site in the hospital in Stornoway to support and guide you to achieve your education and training for end of year GMC sign off.

There is easily accessible and highly confidential pastoral support available whilst in the Western Isles Hospital.

Congratulations on making a great decision on choosing to work on this beautiful island and at the brilliant NHS Western Isles Hospital.

It is important to note that this description is a typical example of your placement and may be subject to change.

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