Keeping up to date with histopathology when you’re out of programme (OOPR)
Maintaining clinical skills while out of programme is a concern for many academic trainees.
Firstly, decide whether this is a priority for you. OOPR (especially a PhD Fellowship) is a unique period of uninterrupted research time; some people choose to maximise the academic output of this period by focusing solely on research and then ‘re-immerse’ themselves in clinical work at the end. The choice is personal; ask your clinical/educational/academic supervisors and more senior academic peers for advice.
If you wish to maintain your clinical skills whilst OOPR, there are a number of options:
- Ask clinical peers/consultants to put signed-out cases to one side(with the Head of Department/supervising consultant’s permission) and set an amount of time each week when you will review them.
- Attend local teaching sessions/black box sessions / journal clubs.
- Attend relevant RCPath/PathSoc/BDIAP/ACP training days.
- Register for an EQA scheme.
- Register for the ESP Path Test.
- Use online resources and slide collections e.g. http://www.virtualpathology.leeds.ac.uk , https://www.pathresources.net/links/
As you approach the end of a period of OOPR, consider whether arranging ‘return to work’ days would be helpful. Discuss this with your clinical and educational supervisors.