wank tube

Advanced Module in Paediatric Anaesthesia

Royal Victoria Infirmary

Lead Clinicians:

Dr Sarah Bell

Dr Claire Campbell


The Great North Children’s Hospital (GNCH) within the Royal Victoria Infirmary (RVI) in Newcastle upon Tyne is a tertiary care referral centre that brings together most Children’s Services within the Newcastle upon Tyne Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and the paediatric academic research programmes of Newcastle University. It offers state-of-the-art facilities within an environment designed to meet the needs of ill children and young people.

The Paediatric Theatre suite is located in New Victoria Wing of the hospital on level 4. There are 10 core paediatric anaesthetic consultants at the GNCH. They have a wide variety of interests and this adds to the uniqueness of this place. This is the only department in the region, where trainees can undertake their Higher and Advanced Paediatric Anaesthesia modules. The department sets very high standards in patient care and this is reflected in the patient and family feedback received by the department. The advnced trainee has a major role within the anaesthetic department.


Departmental Services:

Preassessment services: The paediatric anaesthesia department at the RVI has recently started its Consultant-led preassessment service. This is very topical presently. There will be many audit opportunities for trainees in future to shape this service.

Theatre services: The main surgical specialties at GNCH include: Neurosurgery, General surgery, Otorhinolayngology (ENT), Ophthalmology, Orthopaedics and Plastic surgery. The anaesthetic department has to cater to the needs of some other departments as well. These include: Paediatric medicine (insertion of central and peripheral long lines, Bronchoscopies); Oncology (injection of intrathecal chemotherapy, Bone marrow aspirations); Rheumatology (Injection of steroids).

Radiological services: The department provides anaesthetic services for MRI and CT scans (4 lists per week) in children, which are carried out either in the Level 5 MRI suite or Level 3 CT suite at the New Victoria Wing (NVW) of the hospital.

On-call services: There are two types of on-call services that an advanced trainee will be expected to do. One of these is called the PINC on call, which stands for “Perioperative-Neurosurgical-Children emergencies”. The other type of on-call is called the ORANGE on-call, which stands for “Out of theatre-Resuscitation-And-General emergencies”. As the advanced paediatric fellow, a trainee would be given more opportunities to do PINC on-calls, which will involve providing anaesthesia to General Surgical and Neurosurgical procedures over and above the Paediatric cases.

Acute and chronic Pain Services: There are paediatric acute and chronic pain services in the hospital, which an advanced trainee is expected to participate and gain from the experience.


Trainee Opportunities:

Trainees get excellent support both in terms of direct and indirect supervision, with supervision tailored to requirements. As the advanced trainee, there will be lots of learning opportunities. Some aspects of the advanced training that this post can offer are as follows:

Domain 1 – Clinical Practice

 There are over 8000 paediatric anaesthesia procedures per year at the RVI. Being a tertiary care referral centre, trainees get to see and experience a varied mixture of cases. A full week of work in the Paediatric Theatre Suite should allow the advanced trainee to finish off his/her required number of Work-Place-Based-Assessment (WPBA)s.

Domain 2 – Team Working

 The advanced trainee will get the opportunity to work closely with members of the surgical, medical and theatre teams, to learn planning and management of cases. Theatre lists and their management within the paediatric suite are very dynamic, with the whole team working as a close unit. One is expected to communicate closely with the theatre team, to provide safe delivery of anaesthetic services.

Domain 3 – Leadership

 The advanced trainee gets to do solo (distantly supervised) lists, where one can demonstrate his/her leadership skills. There are also opportunities to get involved with organization of teaching. The advanced trainee has to work as the lead on-call trainee coordinating emergency care.

Domain 4 – Innovation

 The advanced trainee will be expected to undertake at least one audit/survey or research work during the placement, which can lead to service improvements, change of practice or update an already existing departmental guideline.

 Domain 5 – Management

The advanced trainee can get involved with the departmental rota and management level meetings. There is a monthly consultant meeting within the anaesthetic department, which the advanced trainee can attend to get some experience of management.

 Domain 6 – Education

 The advanced trainee will be expected to help with the Introduction to Intermediate Training Paediatric Anaesthesia day and the Final FRCA Revision day. There are other opportunities to expand one’s educational portfolio too e.g. teaching junior trainees, informal teaching of Operating Department Practitioners and getting involved with the consultant-led departmental teaching on Wednesdays.


For further information, please contact Dr. Sarah Bell or Dr. Claire Campbell.