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Boyle, E,Walsh, SR,Grace, PA
The delivery of general paediatric surgery in Ireland: a survey of higher surgical trainees
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The delivery of general paediatric surgery is changing in Ireland. Fewer paediatric surgical procedures are being performed by newly appointed consultant general surgeons, resulting in increased referrals to the specialist paediatric surgeons of uncomplicated general paediatric surgical problems. We surveyed current higher surgical trainees about their views on provision of paediatric surgical services.A questionnaire regarding provision of paediatric surgery was developed by incorporating dichotomous and qualitative questions. This was emailed to all higher surgical trainees in Ireland. Responses were analysed anonymously.There was a response rate of 54%. Most questions drew divided responses. More than half of the responders were opposed to mandatory paediatric surgical training on their scheme and would not be willing to provide paediatric surgery as a consultant. The most common reasons were limited training time and the unlikelihood of becoming competent in paediatric surgery with brief exposure. Sixty-four percent of responders felt that general paediatric surgery should be provided by paediatric surgeons in the future.The opinions expressed here suggest that the current system of local provision of general paediatric surgery is unsustainable. Alternative training arrangements or regionalisation of paediatric surgery may be necessary to avoid overwhelming specialist paediatric centres.
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