In 2015, the 25th ENTOG exchange took place in Utrecht, the Netherlands.
The exchange took place over three working days in host hospitals all around the country and was the 3rd time that the ENTOG exchange has been hosted by the Netherlands since its foundation in 1997.
Margo Lutke Holzik and her dedicated team on the local organising committee organised a terrific exchange and scientific program, which allowed more trainees than ever before to be hosted and experience the world renowned Dutch practice and training.
Trainees from 27 different countries were hosted and their feedback was unanimously positive.
Two trainees from the UK were hosted.
The scientific meeting took place on 11th June at the University Medical Centre in Utrecht. This centrally located, vibrant university city provided the perfect backdrop for an informative, lively and packed program.
Topics this year were simulation and team training in O&G and communication in difficult situation in O&G.
Simulation has been incorporated into the Dutch competency based curriculum for a number of years and in the Netherlands no trainee is permitted ‘hands-on’ operative experience without first completing the simulation package.
This has long been the aim of training programs in other European countries, but the challenges of providing high quality simulation equipment in all training units has meant that it has been challenging to mandate this.
The first part of the day consisted of small group, hands-on simulation in minimal access surgery. There were a range of simulation models available and trainees rotated around the room ensuring that everyone had experience on each model.
Both laparoscopic and hysteroscopic simulators were available and the event was sponsored by Simendo, Olympus and Bayer so their representatives were available to guide trainees, enabling maximal use of time.
Following this the groups moved onto team work, where simulated Obstetric emergency situations were managed using the MOET (management of obstetric emergencies and trauma) approach.
Whilst this style of group training is inherently familiar to UK trainees, this is not true of all our European colleagues. It made for a fun and informative session, following which a number of colleagues felt compelled to introduce scenario, based, team training into their units!
The afternoon was again split and trainees attended workshops on either ‘Dealing with difficult patients’ or ‘Traumatic events at work’.
Both were group sessions focused on sharing experiences common to our wonderful specialty.
I was struck by how, regardless of language and culture, as trainees we are met with common challenges and conflicts.
The session entitled ‘Dealing with difficult patients’ was led by two psychologists and this gave a depth of understanding to a common problem which is often overlooked.
The ENTOG and EBCOG dinner concluded a fantastic day, showcasing the very best of Dutch hospitality.
The ENTOG Council meeting took place the following day.
We heard from three trainees who had attended the exchange, Dr Lagana from Italy, Dr Yuksel from Turkey and Dr Muminiva from Russia.
We waved farewell to our president Maud van de Venne (UK) who stood down after a productive presidential term. She was succeeded by Anna Aabake from Denmark. We wish her all the best in her new post.
The next ENTOG exchange will take place in Turkey. 2016 promises to be an exciting opportunity for UK trainees interested in attending the exchange. Please look out for the application date which will be advertised to you via the RCOG website, your local trainee representative or the ENTOG website.
In conclusion it has been another wonderful year where I have seen ENTOG go from strength to strength, more lasting working relationships have been forged and good practice shared and implemented by trainees.
It is therefore with a heavy heart that I conclude my three year term as your representative. It has been a wonderful, fulfilling experience which has shaped me both personally, professionally and clinically.
The election process of my successor will take place in October and I wish them all the best in the post.
Dr Anna Fabre-Gray MRCOG
UK ENTOG representative