2022 NHS Education for Scotland Medical Directorate Awards
The 9th annual NES Medical Directorate Awards for 2022 recognised outstanding contributions to the quality of medical education and training in Scotland.
The focus of quality management processes is often on areas of medical education and training that require development. However, it is known that many aspects are excellent and that recognition is appropriate.
The Coronavirus Pandemic has caused enormous challenges to learners, educators, the clinical learning environment and to those who organise and administer training. While the awards are open to all, the categories and criteria have been adapted to encourage nominations for contributions made during the pandemic response.
A core group including representation from the Postgraduate Deans, GP Directors, STB Chairs, Scottish Deans Medical Education Group, Scottish Foundation School, NES General Management, Directors of Medical Education and trainees currently oversee this initiative.
1. Award for Innovation in Training
This award will be given in recognition of education or training that goes beyond the expected level of curriculum delivery. It may involve an individual, a local group or a regional team. It may relate to any aspect of training eg simulation, career guidance, leadership development, training the trainer, and in distinctive geographical contexts (e.g. remote/rural).
Dr Adler is an Acute Care Common Stem (Acute Medicine) trainee in Aberdeen
Dr Adler identified an unmet education need for effective point-of-care ultrasonography education for doctors and allied health professionals. Dr Adler took it upon himself to learn this skill and then developed a course for his colleagues. The course that he designed has now been completed by 85 participants over three years. Dr Adler has also designed innovative and low cost resuable phantoms, which has allowed the course to remain free.
Dr Hewitt is an academic FY2 doctor. He surveyed over 1000 medical students, and identified a strong desire for supplemental teaching to mitigate the education gaps created by the pandemic.
Using the survey results, he went on to create two 15-week online courses. These were led by junior doctors, with quality and content reviewed by senior doctors. Sessions were interactive, included a pre-course quiz, and included discussion of basic and clinical sciences, and live clinical examination.
The courses were complemented by a YouTube channel of demonstration videos. His novel virtual teaching series is followed by over 2000 medical students from universities across the UK, and has been very positively evaluated.
This award will be presented to recognise the exceptional support that is given by administrative / secretarial staff across the NES Regional Offices, Medical Schools and Health Boards.
Victoria is the Rota Coordinator for Ninewells Specialist Services in Dundee
She is described by one foundation doctor as “the best rota coordinator I've had. She puts in a lot of effort to actively balance and prioritise training and wellbeing, despite immense service pressures.
Victoria frequently checks in on her doctors to ensure that they are being well supported from a learning and administrative point of view. She communicates actively and compassionately with foundation doctors and ensures that they are valued and can attend regular teaching. Although Vicky is described as not wishing to be in the limelight, we wish to applaud her dedication towards the training and wellbeing of junior doctors.
Kirsty is the Medical Education Coordinator, Western Isles Hospital, Stornoway
Kirsty joined the Western Isles team one year ago, and has revolutionised the support for medical education.
This has included reinvigorating a weekly educational meeting programme that includes external speakers, is recorded and archived and open to others. Kirsty has brought structure to induction, teaching and training, ensuring availability of participants and equipment; ranging from tutorials through to the use of mannequins, teaching of practical procedures, and simulation.
NHSWi now provides a wide range of life support courses, facilitated by Kirsty.
3. Award for an Outstanding Role Model
This award will be given in recognition of an individual whose behaviours, examples or successes have inspired medical students or postgraduate trainees in Scotland.
Joint Runner Up:
Dr. Sarah Miller
Dr Miller is a Consultant in Palliative Medicine in Forth Valley. Whilst shielding at home Sarah continued to be the Palliative Medicine Consultant for the Hospital Team, providing daily phone support to the whole team. She taught junior doctors remotely and her team were awarded the “Team Spirit Award” in July 2021. Sarah was a member of the forth valley staff support and wellbeing group during the pandemic, and set up a number of initiatives to help wellbeing and provide advocacy for other shielding colleagues. Following the return to face to face working, Dr Miller is described by her team as “a brave front line ally, supporting high quality service delivery”.
Joint Runner Up:
Dr. Kim Steel
Dr Steel is Associate Director of Medical Education, NHS Fife
Dr Steel leads officially on ScotGEM, and has oversight of GPSTs, doctors in training, and International Medical Graduates. She delivers on a daily basis so much more than her responsibilities entail and goes above and beyond to ensure students, doctors in training, trainers and teams feel supported and encouraged both to deliver and to receive medical education. She is described as a “bundle of energy” and is a shining example of how to succeed in managing the personal and work-based pressures of the pandemic, showing great care and compassion to colleagues and students.
Dr. Simon Edgar
Dr Simon Edgar, Director of Medical Education, NHS Lothian
Simon has mentored numerous cohorts of trainees in various fellow roles. He has an exceptional ability to inspire and encourage trainees under his mentorship to strive for things they didn’t believe were possible. He encourages trainees to take on leadership roles whilst fostering a supportive environment that means they never feel alone. Despite achieving considerable success, he is described as being humble and honest, openly sharing his “failures”, and how he has grown from them, reminding us that no ones career is without challenges. He values every team member’s contribution and encourages people to challenge him, always being open to new ideas or perspectives, and being able to bring a team together during challenging times.
Dr. Catriona Barr
Dr Catriona Barr, Consultant Anaesthetist at Gilbert Bain Hospital, Shetland
This award recognises Dr Barr’s inspirational, selfless and sustained leadership in supporting local Shetland school pupils/graduates looking to go to medical school.
Over the years Dr Barr has reached out to local schools and career advisors to offer work experience and career guidance to interested pupils. During the pandemic, Dr Barr worked tirelessly to ensure that school pupils could still gain practical experience of what it means to be a doctor.
Dr Barr also built a team to provide support for pupils with university applications and with mock university interviews. In 2021, all pupils in Shetland applying for medical school received university offers. The Awards panel was particularly moved by the testimonials we received from several of the young people that Dr Barr has inspired to choose medicine as a career.
This award will be given in recognition of achievement and commitment to supporting diverse and inclusive practices in a medical education context.
Dr Debbie Aitken and team -
Dr E Andargachew, Dr S Afonso de Barros, Dr M Mathers, Dr C Chopra, Dr I Young, Dr K Macfarlane, A Merchant, Z Finch, Dr T O'Neill, Dr A Dunsmore, Mrs P Burns, Dr C Cruickshank, Ms L Close, Dr A Hamilton, Dr C Mautsi, Dr J Millar, Dr C Mutch, Ms E Dewhirst
This collaborative team have worked within and across NHS Lothian, University of Edinburgh and NHS Education for Scotland to design, deliver and evaluate active bystander training for a very wide range of learners including over 750 medical students, and for other healthcare educators. The workshops were thoughtfully constructed based on real-life experiences from their faculty and work with Edinburgh Medical School LGBTQ+ Medics and with a range of other minoritized, underrepresented and marginalised groups. The Team have a positive, optimistic and flexible approach to deliver their vision of supporting and energising people to flourish.
5. Award for Research in Medical Education
This award will be given in recognition of the creation, dissemination, application and translation of medical education knowledge.
Dr. Kim Walker
Dr Walker is Senior Lecturer in Medical Education at University of Aberdeen.
For over 20 years, Dr Walker has used her knowledge and skills in research and quality improvement to understand and progress key challenges in medical education. Working collaboratively, Dr Walker has championed the use of research to inform practice, and has made many significant contributions to the development of a sustainable medical education research community in Scotland.
Most recently, Dr Walker is principal investigator of the Scottish Doctors COVID-19 Wellbeing Study. This produced a robust evidence base to inform the development and implementation of interventions to support wellbeing and resilience during Covid 19 and beyond. The study received a substantial Chief Scientist Office grant following a highly competitive process. In addition to dissemination through presentations and publications, the findings were reported to Scottish Government and senior NHS executives to inform national workforce recovery.
6. Award for Collaborative Education
Healthcare education is increasingly delivered in partnership and collaboration with other professions, reflecting the reality of contemporary clinical practise. This new award will be given in recognition of an individual or team who has developed effective programmes/interventions of education that involves learners including medicine and at least one other health or social care profession.
Dr. Kelsey Thomson
Dr Thomson is an IMT3 doctor in the West of Scotland. She has led and brought together an interprofessional team of consultants, junior doctors, pharmacists, specialist nurses and advanced nurse practitioners to educate and increase awareness of the importance of medicines reconciliation and prescribing safety. She has also organised several well-received multiprofessional medicine safety monthly talks.
A team led by Drs David Gray, Raha Sundaram, and Staff nurses Kathleen Mcillroy and Kirsty Martin.
The pandemic has caused an increase in moral distress for staff working in critical care. This palliative care and critical care team set up a collaborative education programme, peer support sessions and worked hard to improve staff and family experiences at the end of life. This included teaching by the hospice team, ICU nurses and spiritual teaching by a chaplain. This has led to improved end of life prescribing, enhanced staff participation in palliative care education, and the inclusion of spiritual care at debriefs. Also, there is now equity of access to debriefs with non-medical staff being included, and better support for families.