The North Birmingham VTS has a reputation for being an innovative, dynamic scheme; our practices are generally based in Sutton Coldfield, with some practices in Erdington, Kingstanding and Castle Vale. Trainees are usually allocated posts in the HEFT trust (Good Hope Hospital/Heartlands Hospital and Solihull).
Traditionally training GP's would meet at a half day release course. This usually occurs at the Trinity Centre nearby in central Sutton Coldfield, (Thursday afternoons at 2pm). The scheme currently has four committed course organisers; they are Dr Vinit Kundra, Dr Sarby Soorae,Dr Gurpreet Khaira and Dr Idnan Yunas. The half day release sessions are set to continue and are highly valued by trainees. We also run "Cluster Learning Sets" with the aim of enabling more self-directed learning and agenda setting. Residential, Away days and local CSA courses are also provided.
The South Birmingham Scheme evolved over many years. It introduces the speciality trainee to the concepts of general practice, while providing support and an educational base for ST1/2 and 3’s together. We are a "learner-led"; organised into groups, each facilitated by one of the course organisers (Training Programme Director) David Taylor, Malcolm Laird, Joyce Williams and Will Drever.
We have secured a new venue to host our VTS sessions as from January 2014 at the Birmingham Medical Institute in Edgbaston. This will provide a congenial, comfortable environment to facilitate our learning on Thursday afternoons. Other VTS events include a two day residential in September, an 'away day' in the spring and some local CSA practice courses. In addition we run small “cluster” sessions run by trainees, these are appreciated learning opportunities. All participants are encouraged to attend courses (family planning, minor surgery, child health surveillance etc.) during the scheme, but the predominant aim is to promote holistic thinking practitioners who successfully obtain their CCT.
East Birmingham & Solihull
East Birmingham and Solihull offers training in an area that comprises of a population mix ranging from deprivation in parts of the city, to extreme affluence in the rural suburbs of Solihull. There is a broad spread of ethnicity represented within the patient population. Hospital training is, in the main, carried out by Heart of England NHS Trust, a group of highly rated national teaching hospitals based in Solihull, Birmingham and Sutton Coldfield.
The East Birmingham and Solihull GP Programme is run by Dr Rodger Charlton and Dr Abs Bhattacharyya and Dr Aman Arora .It is a scheme based on sound educational principles that aims to pragmatically approach the GP curriculum in a stepwise approach, resulting in good MRCGP pass rates and high satisfaction rates amongst trainees.
Using the guidance from latest educational Cochrane reviews to plan the programme, we realise there is still a great role for specialists teaching us carefully selected GP orientated topics (e.g. the management of heart failure in primary care), and most weeks we enjoy a visit for the first hour from a locally renowned expert to update us, encompassing a reflective discussion on what we will take away with us to change our practice for the better. We invite our local GPs and trainers to join us for these interactive talks providing good networking opportunities for facilitating future local employment. The local GPs leave us for the second part of the afternoon where we cover more of the GP curriculum in a self-directed manner in smaller "learning sets" and we also run at least one residential course aimed at AKT or CSA preparation. The half day release sessions at held at Dorridge cricket club.
This scheme is based around the central Birmingham area. It is a vibrant, diverse area with the challenges and joy that comes in working in the inner city. There are a wide variety of hospital jobs offered at City, including specialties such as ENT, dermatology and ophthalmology, as well as medicine, obstetrics and gynaecology, paediatrics, psychiatry, accident and emergency and geriatrics. We offer a wide variety of teaching, combining half day release with some modular courses throughout the three years. The emphasis is on learning through enjoyment and active participation. There is a good system of pastoral care and there are also regular social events. There are three TPDs who facilitate the half day release scheme and offer support throughout your training and they are Dr Matthew Nye, Dr Jamie Hynesr and Dr Melvin Xavier. Local trainers are also keen to get involved in cluster work. CSA courses and ‘Away days’ are provided on this scheme.
Broad Based Training
The Broad Based Training programme is also based at GHH. The broad based trainees have their own TPD who is Dr Rita Bagchi. The traditional GP VTS and the BBT scheme have close links.