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Scottish Medical Training

Scotland - the home of medical excellence

Speciality: Core Anaesthetics

Programme Description
GMC Reference: SES/SRT/512

The SE Scotland anaesthetic programme is the second largest programme in Scotland with around 120 trainees across the 7 years of training. Within SE Scotland we are able to deliver all the requirements of the RCOA 2021 curriculum across a breadth of teaching and district general hospitals as well as tertiary units and national services.

 Stage 1 anaesthetics training is a 3 year programme leading to the award of the Stage 1 Training certificate which must be achieved to be eligible for entry to Specialist Training. There are currently 37 trainees in core anaesthetics. There are typically 12 posts available each year which are recruited in round one of national recruitment in January for commencement in August. Entry to the programme is through Scottish National Recruitment which is run by ANRO based out of the West Midland’s Deanery.


Trainees in stage 1 will rotate through the majority of hospitals in the region during their 3 years. In CT1 trainees will do 6 months of anaesthetics during which they will gain the knowledge and skills to anaesthetise straightforward cases with a supervisor available in the hospital. By achieving this trainees will gain their Initial Assessment of Competence. This then allows them to be put on the on call rota. In the second 6 months of CT1 trainees will undertake a further 3 months of anaesthesia and 3 months of intensive care training. Intensive Care Training is delivered in one of the FICM accredited units in either Western General Hospital, Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh or Victoria Hospital Kirkcaldy.

In CT2 trainees will do 2 6 month blocks of anaesthesia and the majority will have a 1 month placement at the Simpson’s Centre for Reproductive Health (SCRH) based at the Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh where trainees will get obstetric experience. By the end of CT2 trainees will be expected to have gained their Initial Assessment of Competence in Obstetric Anaesthesia.

In CT3 trainees will undertake a 2 month placement in SCRH, 1 month in paediatrics based at the Royal Hospital for Children and Young People, 3 months of Intensive Care and 6 months of Anaesthetics. By the end of Stage 1 training, trainees must have completed the full Primary FRCA exam and gained their Stage 1 Training Certificate in order to eligible for application to ST4.


Successful candidates are able to indicate SE Scotland as a preferred region during the recruitment process. Once all appointments have been made, successful candidates will be allocated their placements for the first year.


Research, audit, teaching and management opportunities

Audit and quality improvement opportunities are available in each department in the region with designated leads overseeing the work. A number of consultants are trained Scottish Improvement Leaders that are able to support QI work.  The region also has a trainee network, SQuARes NET, to provide training and support for QI work and promote collaborative working on QI projects.


The academic department of the University of Edinburgh has a number of opportunities available for both in and out of programme research. More information regarding these can be obtained from Professor Tim Walsh.


There are well established training courses within the region that help with preparation for the Primary FRCA.  CT1s are granted a half day of study leave per week to attend the courses which cover the basic sciences for the exam. Trainees who are successful in the MCQ/SBA can then attend the regional OSCE/VIVA course in preparation for these components of the Primary FRCA. Over the years SE Scotland has had one of the highest exam pass rates in the UK.

The RCOA 2021 curriculum has placed a strong emphasis on simulation as part of the IAC and IACOA. Within the region we have a number of simulation experts who have developed regional training courses to support the acquisition of knowledge and skills for novice trainees. These are in addition to local teaching which includes CBD sessions, journal clubs, M+Ms and departmental updates.


Where is the training delivered?
Training is delivered across:

Forth Valley Royal Hospital - FVRH, Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh, St Johns Hospital, Livingston, Victoria Hospital, Kirkcaldy, Western General Hospital, Edinburgh, Borders General Hospital, Melrose

Where is training delivered?

Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh

Royal Hospital for Children and Young People, Edinburgh

Western General Hospital Edinburgh

St John’s Hospital, Livingston,

Victoria Hospital, Kirkcaldy

Queen Margaret Hospital, Dunfermline

Borders General Hospital, Melrose

Forth Valley Royal Hospital, Larbert

Contacts and Useful Links
Programme Type Deanery based or National: Deanery
Administration office South-East of Scotland
Lead Dean / Director Professor Adam Hill
Responsible Associate Postgraduate Dean or Assistant Director (GP) Mr Alastair Murray
Specialty or Sub-specialty Specialty or Sub-specialty: Specialty
Date of GMC recent approval September 2023
Associated Royal College - Faculty
Royal College of Anaesthetists (web site)
Curriculum and Associated Assessment System
Programme Administrator: Named Programme Administrator: Alan Summers
Address: NHS Education For Scotland, 89 Hydepark St, Glasgow G3 8BW
Tel: 0141 223 1424
Programme Director Programme Director Name: Dr Oliver Daly
Address: Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh, 51 Little France Crescent, Old Dalkeith Road, Edinburgh, EH16 4SA.
Quality of Training Quality Management

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