1. Be organized.
- Establish important contacts with consultants in Emergency Medicine, Specialist Registrars in Emergency Medicine and other trainees.
- Identify mandatory training days and inform your rota organizer well in advance.
- Book courses and conferences early and secure study leave in good time.
- Ensure your mandatory courses e.g. ACLS, ATLS, APLS are up to date
2. Be exam focused.
- Contact other trainees planning to sit the same exam as you and establish study groups.
- Know what the format of exam in advance of the exam you plan to sit. Consult the College of Emergency Medicine curriculum.
- Practice exam standard questions.
3. Be proactive – manage your training.
- Arrange regular meetings with your Emeregncy Consultant mentor in your current ED post early in the rotation, and outline clear objectives for your training with them.
- Keep a logbook of procedures / ultrasound scans / interesting patients
- Try to present regularly, for example at local journal clubs, departmental teaching, grand rounds and conferences.
4. Consider subspecializing.
Emergency Medicine is a fantastic career and can be made even more interesting by adding subspecialty interests and skills. Some subspecialities to consider:
- Pre-Hospital Emergency Medicine
- Paediatric Emergency Medicine
- Intensive Care Medicine
- Academic Emergency Medicine
5. Expect tough and stressful times.
- Plan holidays and time-off well ahead.
- Arrange study leave that will break up your working routine and keep you interested when you are feeling tired and risk feeling burnt out.
- Chat to your friends, colleagues or GP if any issues, personal or otherwise, are bothering you.
- If you feel stress or any other issues are affecting your work, consult with a ED consultant early. Help is always available.
6. Keep interested!
Stay up to date with brilliant online resources, blog sites, podcasts and the wealth of Free Open Access Medical Education (#FOAMed via Twitter)
- Life in the Fast Lane
Join the Irish Emergency Medicine Trainees’ Association which organises regular meetings for emergency medicine trainees and has an email list which disseminates relevant information on courses and conferences to trainees.
Get involved with Global Emergency Care Skills (GECS). GECS regularly seeks emergency trainees to volunteer to assist with fundraising activities and Higher Specialty Trainees to volunteer to teach on training programs in the developing world.
7. Enjoy your downtime.
- Be sure to develop a healthy work/life balance.
- Socialise with colleagues and the wider hospital community.
8. Push for educational opportunities.
- Look for the learning points with every patient encounter.
- Get involved in delivering teaching – there is no better way to consolidate your own knowledge.