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Year : 2014  |  Volume : 10  |  Issue : 4  |  Page : 185-189

A structured preceptorship programme for laparoscopic colorectal surgery in Wales: An early experience

1 Department of Surgery, Prince Charles Hospital, Merthyr Tydfil, Wales, United Kingdom
2 Department of Surgery, Princess of Wales Hospital, Bridgend, United Kingdom
3 Department of Surgery, Prince Charles Hospital, Merthyr Tydfil, Wales; Department of Coloproctology, University of Glamorgan, Pontypridd, United Kingdom

Correspondence Address:
Puthucode Haray
Modular Building 2, Prince Charles Hospital, Merthyr Tydfil, Wales, CF47 9DT
United Kingdom
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0972-9941.141512

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Introduction: A single experienced laparoscopic colorectal surgeon introduced an outreach preceptorship programme (OPP) for laparoscopic colorectal surgery (LCS) in Wales with the aim of supporting consultants in the early stages of their learning curve, as well as to help avoid some of the problems faced by self-taught laparoscopic surgeons. The structured programme consisted of a minimum 1 day master class at the preceptor's operating theatre, followed by multiple outreach visits by the preceptor. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness and early experience of this programme. Materials and Methods: Clinical end-points (conversions, morbidity/mortality and length of hospital stay) were analysed from a prospectively maintained database. Evaluation of the programme was based on interviews with the preceptee surgeons performed by a neutral observer. Results: Between May 2008 and July 2010, 11 Consultants (six hospitals) were preceptored (two still in programme). 66 cases (20 in the master class, 46 as an outreach service) were performed as a part of this programme. Clinical outcome: Conversion rate and 30-day mortality was 1.5%. Morbidity was reported at 12% (8/66) and median length of stay was 6 days. Programme evaluation: All interviewed respondents found the master class and outreach service to be well-organised and would recommend it to their colleagues. The median number of outreach visits per hospital was 5. All the preceptees have performed independent cases since the programme. Conclusion: This OPP delivers one-to-one coaching at the point of service delivery and has been shown to be effective in achieving safe transference of skills to those wishing to develop a service for LCS.


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