International Journal of Healthcare Simulation
Adi Health+Wellness
142 The College of Anaesthesiologists of Ireland Return to Work Programme: An Innovative Approach to Support Trainees’ Well-Being and Patient Safety on Return to Work
DOI 10.54531/QCYF5806, Volume: 1, Issue: Supplement 1, Pages: A49-A50
Article Type: Innovations, Article History

Table of Contents





Within the 6-year Specialist Anaesthesiology Training (SAT) programme overseen by the College of Anaesthesiologists of Ireland (CAI), there is now an option for trainees to take up to 12-month unaccredited professional or personal leave after years 2 and 4. There is also a cohort of trainees taking academic leave, maternity leave or other leave. There is growing recognition in the CAI and among other Training Bodies that returning to work following a period of absence can be daunting. It requires a comprehensive support package to help with the readjustment to the clinical and training environment, and rebuild confidence [1]. The CAI Committee of Anaesthesiology Trainees (CAT) has also made this recommendation after running a voluntary survey among its members.


A CAI steering group was convened to design a Return to Programme (RTP) support package, with the following objectives:

To develop a strategy for managing a return to anaesthesia following a period of absence

To provide a blended content learning package aiming to ease SAT back into the clinical environment

To rebuild confidence with/among the peers in a safe simulation environment

To improve trainees’ well-being and patient safety by refamiliarization with anaesthesia guidelines and emergency algorithms


It has been agreed that the RTP syllabus must reflect all eight domains of the Irish Medical Council (IMC) domains of Good Professional Practice, as in the following: Patient Safety and Quality of Patient Care; Relating to Patients; Communication and Interpersonal Skills; Collaboration and Teamwork; Management (including Self-Management); Scholarship; Professionalism, and Clinical Skills [2]. This is to be achieved by providing a blended content support package consisting of online refresher lectures in core clinical areas (e.g. perioperative care, paediatric and obstetric anaesthesia, and intensive care medicine), lectures focussed on trainees’ well-being and human resources matters, and face-to-face simulation sessions.


The lectures have been recorded and embedded in the CAI e-learning platform. A list of simulation scenarios reflecting the most common anaesthesiology emergencies has been selected and tailored towards the needs of the destination training sites and experience level. A first course will take place prior to trainees recommencing their clinical role in July 2021. On successful evaluation, it is aimed to conduct the RTP every 6 months going forward.



GASagain [Internet]. 2021 [cited 19 June 2021] . Available from:


Medical Council – Good Professional Practice [Internet]. 2021 [cited 20 June 2021] . Available from: The College of Anaesthesiologists of Ireland Return to Work Programme: An Innovative Approach to Support Trainees’ Well-Being and Patient Safety on Return to Work&author=Vincent Wall,Aisling McMahon,Louise Moran,Eilis Condon,Crina Burlacu,&keyword=&subject=Innovations,