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Scottish Medical Training

Scotland - the home of medical excellence

Speciality: Emergency Medicine

Programme Description
GMC Reference: NOS2561

The North of Scotland Emergency Medicine Training Programme offers trainees a full exposure to all aspects of Emergency Medicine. Although located primarily at Aberdeen Royal Infirmary and Royal Aberdeen Children’s hospital most trainees will generally rotate through to Raigmore Hospital in Inverness, within core and higher training.


With a population approximately 250,000 Aberdeen stands between the Rivers Dee and Don. The historic city has many buildings of architectural interest, and the use of the sparkling local granite has earned Aberdeen the name of the Silver City. As well as being an international centre for the oil industry, Aberdeen retains its old charm and character making it an attractive place to live, with a good quality of life. There are good national and international transport links by air, rail, road and sea and a wide choice of housing in the city and in rural villages within easy commuting distance to the hospital.

Education facilities (including two universities) in the city hold a high reputation and the city has a strong family focus. Amenities are first class, with restaurants, night clubs, theatres, music hall, new exhibition centre, art galleries, museums and sporting facilities. The city is close to some of Scotland’s best countryside with easy access for hill-walking, beaches, mountaineering, skiing, fishing and is world-renowned for golf. 


Inverness stands on the River Ness and has a population of nearly 70,000. It was granted city status in 2000. It is an attractive city with a mild climate and offers access to the Highlands, Loch Ness and the West Coast. There are good transport links by road, rail and air to all parts of Scotland and the UK.

Additional information: 
University of Aberdeen: 
NHS Grampian: 
NHS Highland: 
Aberdeen City: 

Specialty Information 

The Emergency Department at Aberdeen Royal Infirmary is staffed by 23 Consultants with 4 being recognised Paediatric trainers delivering training within Royal Aberdeen Children’s Hospital.  The portfolio careers of the Consultant body include PHEM, the National Hyperbaric Centre, research, University involvement, sports medicine, and other private interests.  ARI and the RACH is one of Scotland's Major Trauma Centres for both adults and children, and Aberdeen is the National Respiratory ECMO unit.  The combined Aberdeen Royal Infirmary/Royal Aberdeen Children’s Hospital Emergency Department treats approximately 80,000 patients per year and the region has the unenviable reputation as having the most recorded road traffic accidents within Scotland.  Aberdeen hosts one of Scotland's two Emergency Medical Retrieval Services offering PHEM and retrieval opportunities.  In addition, patients are treated remotely from the Department through modern telemedicine links to Community Hospitals scattered throughout Grampian. Aberdeen Royal Infirmary is one of two hospitals in the United Kingdom providing medical advice to offshore shipping within UK waters and regularly treats patients arriving from offshore oil installations by helicopter. The ED has close links with the hospitals' other departments including Acute Medicine, Critical Care, Toxicology, Paediatrics, Mental Health and the surgical specialities.  

There is an ethos of daily clinical teaching tailored to the FRCEM curriculum. In addition, there is regular teaching for the senior trainees tailored to passing the FRCEM and preparation for life as a Consultant. The Department boasts a large cohort of junior doctors, Physician Associates, ENPs and nursing staff who make up the fabric of the ED. Simulation teaching holds a heavy emphasis in the department and involvement in all aspects of the running of the ED is encouraged.

Rotation to Raigmore Hospital in Inverness allows trainees access to District General Hospital experience and in addition a further venue for undertaking additional educational opportunities. 

Our graduating trainees have a very high success rate at the final College exam and trainees have a very high rate of being appointed to Consultant positions within 3 months of their CCT date.

Research, audit, teaching and management opportunities

Training in Emergency Medicine (EM) in the North of Scotland provides excellent experience in the full spectrum of both adult and paediatric emergency presentations.

There is ample opportunity for audit and evidence of participation is required for satisfactory progress in training.  Adit and Quality Improvement are core aspects of the department and led by our QI and Clinical Governance leads. Over and above this there is opportunity to participate in further projects and research within the Department which can lead to presentation and publication.  We have a sizeable Consultant-led Research team within the ED which all staff participate in to varying extents.  Collaboration with other departments and the Universities is a common occurrence. 

The teaching programme involves regular protected teaching continues to run in the Emergency Department at Aberdeen Royal Infirmary. Monthly protected regional teaching days cover the FRCEM curriculum and are complementary to the local teaching offered through various platforms including radiology meetings, governance meetings, journal club and a simulation programme. An ultrasound strategy is in place to cover this area of the curriculum.

Appropriate use of study leave is actively encouraged. A variety of additional training resources are available locally through the Deanery and University of Aberdeen Medical School. There is active participation of staff in locally run ALS, APLS and ETC courses but trainees should apply to take Study Leave for that which they feel to be central to their learning. 

In the North we are keen to invest in our trainees, so they attain their best in all facets of their development as Emergency Physicians.


Training is delivered primarily in Aberdeen Royal Infirmary and the Royal Aberdeen Children's Hospital, both on the Foresterhill site in Aberdeen. 

Raigmore Hospital in Inverness offers DGH opportunities and trainees generally rotate through there for a scheduled period.  NHS Grampian also holds Dr Gray's Hospital in Elgin, which may offer future DGH opportunities and experience. 


  1. My phone number is 01224 550506 (ED Reception)
  2. The Associated Royal College Faculty box: The Royal College of Emergency Medicine
Where is the training delivered?
Training is delivered across:

Aberdeen Royal Infirmary, Raigmore Hospital, Inverness, Royal Aberdeen Childrens Hospital

North and North-East Scotland – placements in Aberdeen hospitals and Inverness
NHS Grampian
Aberdeen Royal Infirmary, Aberdeen
Royal Aberdeen Children’s Hospital, Aberdeen
NHS Highland
Raigmore Hospital, Inverness

Contacts and Useful Links
Programme Type Deanery based or National: Deanery
Administration office North of Scotland
Lead Dean / Director Professor Adam Hill
Responsible Associate Postgraduate Dean or Assistant Director (GP) Dr Joy Miller
Specialty or Sub-specialty Specialty or Sub-specialty: Specialty
Date of GMC recent approval August 2010
Associated Royal College - Faculty
(web site)
Curriculum and Associated Assessment System
Programme Administrator: Named Programme Administrator: Margaret McDove
Address: NHS Education for Scotland Glasgow, G3 8BW
Programme Director Programme Director Name: Dr Bianca Ebtehadj
Address: Aberdeen Royal Infirmary
Quality of Training Quality Management

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