The New Welsh Imaging Academy

A change in how radiology training will be delivered in South Wales

In response to the national shortage of radiologists an imaging academy in south Wales is planned. The National Imaging Academy, Wales, is a proposed new teaching academy for trainee radiologists in the south Wales area. The Academy is an exciting collaboration between Health Boards and, if we are successful with our funding plans, The National Imaging Academy, Wales will open to trainees in August 2017 to provide high quality education in a bespoke facility.

The Academy will be a flagship purpose-designed state of the art facility that will take up to 20 trainees per year, with a phased increase until 2020. The Academy is likely to be situated at Pencoed Business Park, just off junction 35 of the M4.

The Academy will deliver the RCR curriculum in a dedicated environment through IT suites, skills labs with simulation training and a lecture theatre. Consultant radiologists from across south Wales will provide lectures, lead seminars and provide supervision for reporting sessions at the Academy. E-learning will be available alongside the didactic teaching, use of textbooks and equipment.

Trainees will be taught the use of Picture Archiving and Communication Systems (PACS) in the Academy and will use it to report on live cases - initially supervised by trainers, followed by independent reporting when appropriate. The work load can be drawn from all the local hospitals enabling batch reporting of certain studies to ensure the best exposure to rare procedures and cases. There will be Ultrasound machines on site to enable structured training on real patients once simulation training has provided basic technique.

An Academy trainee's time will be divided between training in the Academy setting whilst also undertaking clinical placements at hospitals throughout South Wales. The exact rotations will be developed to optimise training opportunities in the different years. Our current trainees often live in the larger cities and commute for training days, however the location the of the academy and training centres allows prospective trainees to be based almost anywhere in South Wales.

The Academy training model has been very successful in the three English Academies which have been running for over 11 years. Our Academy will incorporate the best features from there and learn from their experiences to optimise best use of the Academy.

We are hugely excited about the prospect of moving to an Academy model of teaching.

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